Failed Attack on Base Leaves 5 Insurgents Dead

Compiled from International Security Assistance Force Joint Command News Releases

WASHINGTON, Sept. 24, 2010 - At least five insurgents were killed and another was captured during a failed attack on Forward Operating Base Gardez in Afghanistan's Paktia province today, military officials reported.

The attack began when a vehicle, followed closely by four insurgents wearing suicide-bomber vests, attempted to breach a fortified area of the base.

Coalition forces engaged and destroyed the insurgents' vehicle. The remaining attackers were killed as they tried to flee.

In the aftermath of the incident, explosive ordnance disposal soldiers found and disposed of the suicide-bomber vests. No coalition forces were killed or injured.

The operation is still ongoing, officials said, with coalition forces pursuing the rest of the attacking force, estimated to be around 20 insurgents.

In other news from Afghanistan:

-- Based on information from intelligence sources, coalition forces conducted a precision air strike in a remote valley of Kabul province yesterday, killing Qari Mansur, a senior Haqqani terrorist network facilitator, after he and five of his associates attacked an Afghan police unit the day before. Qari Mansur reportedly took attack instructions directly from Haqqani senior leaders in Pakistan prior to Afghanistan's Sept. 18 elections, officials said. A suspected mine field prevented a follow-on Afghan police ground force from assessing the engagement area, but Afghan and coalition forces confirmed all six insurgents were killed.

-- Acting on tips from local residents and intelligence sources, a combined Afghan and coalition patrol detained several men with suspected insurgent links in Uruzgan province yesterday. They were found at a compound associated with a man who specializes in construction and emplacement of roadside bombs and has been involved in numerous attacks against Afghan and coalition forces. The targeted insurgent is believed to have received advanced training in Pakistan and appears to have close ties to Taliban leadership there, officials said.

-- A confessed bomb-attack facilitator detained this week led Afghan and coalition forces to a storage site of bomb-making materials in Kabul today. He said he had hidden 27 bomb initiators at a friend's house, telling his friend that he was going to leave a gym bag at his home and that he didn't want it disturbed. Since the homeowner unknowingly stored the materials, officials said, Afghan authorities did not charge him.

-- During a vehicle checkpoint operation in Helmand province yesterday, a combined Afghan and coalition force discovered an anti-aircraft heavy machine gun and detained several men connected with its discovery.

-- Afghan and coalition security forces killed an attacker and detained four suspected insurgents in Helmand province overnight while in pursuit of a Taliban military commission member for the Babaji area of the province's Nad-e Ali district. The commission member also is believed to be the new deputy military commander for the Lashkar Gah and Narh-e Saraj area. During the initial clearance of the targeted compound, the security force breached a padlocked door, and a man hiding in the room lunged at them with a blade. The security force pushed him away, but he lunged at them again, and he was shot and killed. Te security force found 50 pounds of wet opium, which often is trafficked to fund the insurgency.

-- In an operation based on intelligence information, Afghan and coalition security forces detained several suspected insurgents in Kandahar province's Panjwai district yesterday while in pursuit of the Taliban deputy commander for the Dand district. The commander allocates and distributes ammunition and weapons, to fighters in his area and reportedly is involved in the acquisition of suicide-bomber vests and vehicle-borne bombs.

-- Afghan and coalition security forces acting on intelligence information detained several suspected insurgents and seized weapons in Khost province yesterday while in pursuit of a Haqqani weapons and ammunition facilitator operating in the Sabari district.

-- Afghan and coalition security forces detained several suspected insurgents in Paktia province yesterday during an intelligence-based operation while in pursuit of a Taliban subcommander operating in the Mata Khan district. The commander coordinates and conducts roadside-bomb attacks and facilitates weapons and ammunition for future attacks.

-- An Afghan and coalition security patrol in Helmand province found more than 3,300 pounds of dried opium Sept. 22. A civilian vehicle became stuck in the sand when the driver attempted to evade the patrol at a vehicle checkpoint. The two men in the vehicle fled on foot and were not found. When the patrol searched the vehicle they found and destroyed the narcotics.

-- Multiple intelligence reports and tips from local residents led to the detention of a wanted Taliban commander by Afghan and coalition security forces in Kabul Sept. 22. The target was a Taliban commander and roadside-bomb attack planner who operates in the Kabul area.

-- Afghan National Police and U.S. Special Forces on patrol in Baghlan province came to the aid of eight Afghans injured in a car accident yesterday. The convoy was en route to Pol-e Kumri when they encountered heavy traffic. The partnered force drove around the traffic and found it was caused by an accident that occurred shortly before their arrival. The partnered force provided first aid to the eight injured civilians and helped to load the wounded into ambulances and taxis for transportation to local medical facilities.

-- Afghan and coalition forces patrolling in Badghis province's Bala Murghab district transported a 9-year old Afghan boy for medical treatment for blast wounds he'd suffered as a result of a rocket insurgents launched at the security force that did not explode on impact. Before the security team could disarm the rocket, the boy kicked it. It burst into flames and injured the boy.

-- A suicide-bomber attack killed a civilian and wounded about 15 more in northern Afghanistan today, according to initial reports. The explosion occurred near an International Security Assistance Force convoy, disabling one vehicle, and heavily damaging a civilian bus traveling behind the convoy in Balkh province's Balkh district. ISAF servicemembers assisted in treating the injured civilians and analyzed the explosive device used in the attack.

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