Combined Force Captures Haqqani Leader in Afghanistan

Compiled from International Security Assistance Force Joint Command News Releases

WASHINGTON, May 27, 2011 - A combined Afghan and coalition security force captured a Haqqani terrorist network leader and several of his associates in the Gardez district of Afghanistan's Paktia province yesterday, military officials reported.

The leader commanded 30 to 40 fighters in the Khost and Gardez districts who were involved in anti-government operations along the main road between the province's Sperah and Nadir Shah Kot districts.

In other operations yesterday:

-- In Helmand province's Nahr-e Saraj district, a combined force detained several suspected insurgents while searching for a Taliban leader responsible for planning and commanding operations against Afghan forces.

-- A combined force detained two suspected insurgents in Kandahar province's Kandahar city while searching for a Taliban leader. The leader directs a core group of insurgent fighters augmented by al-Qaida-associated foreign fighters in Quetta, Pakistan.

-- In Khost province's Manduzai district, a combined force detained a suspected insurgent during an operation to target a Haqqani network leader involved in roadside-bomb manufacturing and attacks against Afghan government establishments and the Afghan army.

-- In Logar province's Charkh district, a combined Afghan and coalition security force detained two suspected insurgents during a clearance operation to disrupt future insurgent activity in an area historically associated with Taliban facilitators.

-- In Kandahar province's Zharay district, a combined patrol found 551 pounds of hashish.

-- A coalition patrol in Helmand province's Marja district found 1,102 pounds of wet opiumand detained two men associated with the cache.

-- In Helmand province's Nad-e Ali district, a coalition patrol found eight 81 mm illumination rounds, 49 7.62 mm rounds, 15 5.56 mm rounds and an audio tape.

-- A combined patrol in Kandahar province's Arghandab district found 15 82 mm rounds.

-- In Herat province's Shindad district, a combined force found a cache of mortar and small-arms rounds, seven rocket-propelled grenades, an anti-tank mine, 23 five-quart jugs filled with homemade explosives, 53 fuses, 33 feet of electric wire, two pressure plates and 19 RPG propellants.

In other recent operations:

-- A combined force in the Afghan capital of Kabul found 18 hand grenades, about 4,409 pounds of ammonium nitrate -- a banned fertilizer used to make roadside bombs -- 40 round fuses, 27 cans of explosive material, 2,700 detonators, four timed detonators and 20 rifle magazines.

-- In Helmand province's Sangin district, a combined patrol found 220 pounds of opium May 23 and 24. The drug cache would have a street value of $500,000 once exported, officials said. The force transferred a man who had anacetic anahydride -- a precursor for producing heroin -- to the custody of Afghan forces for questioning.

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