Airstrike in Helmand Kills 7 Insurgents

Compiled from International Security Assistance Force Joint Command News Releases

WASHINGTON, Nov. 12, 2010 - An International Security Assistance Force airstrike targeting a district-level Taliban command and control center in the Now Zad district of Afghanistan's Helmand province today left seven insurgents dead, military officials reported.

Multiple intelligence sources, surveillance and tips from local residents indicated that the Taliban were using the location to control insurgent activities and as a meeting site, officials said, with numerous armed insurgents coming and going over the last few days, officials said.

Initial reports indicate no civilians were harmed in the operation.

In other news from Afghanistan:

-- An ISAF airstrike based on intelligence information targeted numerous armed insurgents planting bombs along a road used by Afghan and coalition forces in Kunduz province's Chahar Darah district yesterday. After ensuring no civilians were nearby, ISAF conducted the air strike. An assessment determined four insurgents were killed, another was wounded, and the roadside bombs were destroyed.

-- Three insurgents were killed and two others were wounded yesterday when ISAF forces targeted a senior Taliban leader who facilitates roadside bombs and components for local insurgents during an airstrike in Helmand's Now Zad district yesterday. The targeted Taliban leader also directs and participates in attacks against Afghan and ISAF forces, officials said, and he also is alleged to preside over a shadow civil court in the district. Multiple intelligence sources, tips from local residents led ISAF forces to his location. Over successive days of observation, the Taliban leader was targeted as he was meeting a group of armed insurgents at a remote meeting location. Officials are assessing whether the Taliban leader was among those killed in the strike. Initial reports indicate no civilians were harmed in the operation.

-- ISAF officials confirmed that Mamur, a Taliban facilitator known to provide weapons and explosives to Taliban senior leadership in Kabul and Nangarhar provinces was killed during an overnight operation Nov. 10.

-- Afghan and coalition forces detained several suspected terrorists in Kandahar province's Panjwai district as they targeted a Taliban roadside-bomb facilitator who is known to coordinate the movement of weapons and bomb components.

-- In Helmand's Musa Qalah district, a combined Afghan and coalition security force targeting a senior Taliban district leader who coordinates weapons and bomb components for insurgents operating in the province's Sangin district detained several suspected insurgents.

-- In eastern Khost province yesterday, security forces targeted a compound in the Sabari district to search for a Haqqani terrorist network facilitator who supplies weapons, vehicles and materials to insurgent fighters in the area. During the search of the targeted compound, the security force found an automatic weapon and explosive material before detaining numerous suspected insurgents for questioning.

-- ISAF officials confirmed the capture of two Taliban roadside-bomb facilitators in Kandahar province's Spin Boldak district during an intelligence-driven Afghan and coalition force operation yesterday.

-- A combined Afghan and ISAF patrol repelled an insurgent attack yesterday in Helmand's Sangin district. The patrol came under attack from small-arms fire shortly after a member of the patrol was struck by makeshift bomb device. The force positively identified multiple insurgent firing positions and returned fire with small arms and grenades while trying to evacuate casualties by helicopter. An air weapons team engaged an insurgent position with a missile and its 30 mm cannon, and a fixed-wing aircraft engaged insurgent positions with a precision-guided weapon and several strafing passes. Coalition forces also engaged insurgent positions with two rounds of precision artillery. Initial reports indicate 15 insurgents were killed in the engagement, with no civilian casualties.

-- ISAF officials confirmed the capture of the Taliban leader for Farah province's Bala Boluk district during a Nov. 8 operation.

-- Coalition forces conducted a precision airstrike in Paktia province Nov. 10, killing a Taliban leader who operated in the Zurmat district commanding a cell of fighters involved in facilitating and planting roadside bombs on transportation routes. He also coordinated and conducted reconnaissance and ambushes against coalition convoys and aircraft. Based on intelligence sources, coalition forces tracked him to a remote area and killed him with the airstrike after verifying insurgent activity and carefully planning to avoid civilian causalities.

-- In Kandahar province, Afghan and coalition security forces detained two suspected Taliban insurgents yesterday while searching for a Taliban roadside-bomb facilitator for the province's Spin Boldak district in an intelligence-driven operation. The facilitator is associated with transporting bombs and components from Pakistan through the Spin Boldak district, which borders Pakistan, for distribution throughout the province. He also is known to support the attack networks in the provincial capital. Security forces confiscated numerous bomb components.

-- Afghan civilians led an Afghan and ISAF patrol to a roadside-bomb device cache in Kunduz province's Aliabad district Nov. 8. The cache was secured and destroyed safely in place.

Afghan and coalition forces protect any women and children present during their operations, officials said.

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