Combined Force Arrests Taliban Leader in Helmand Province

From an International Security Assistance Force Joint Command News Release

KABUL, Afghanistan, May 22, 2013 - A combined Afghan and coalition security force arrested a Taliban leader and four other insurgents in the Nahr-e Saraj district of Afghanistan's Helmand province today, military officials reported.

The leader plans, directs and executes attacks against Afghan and coalition forces. He also is instrumental in producing and planting improvised explosive devices and conducts reconnaissance and intelligence gathering for local insurgents.

Also today, a combined force in Wardak province's Sayyidabad district arrested two insurgents during a search for a senior Taliban leader who controls about 70 insurgents responsible for attacks against Afghan and coalition forces. He also oversees weapons trafficking and reports on insurgent operations to higher-ranking Taliban officials. The security force also seized an assault rifle and ammunition.

In Afghanistan operations yesterday:

-- A combined force in Paktia province's Zurmat district killed four insurgents during a search for a senior Haqqani network intelligence operative. He also coordinates placement of mines and IEDs, provides equipment to insurgents and organizes kidnappings for ransom.

-- Afghan local police and coalition forces found and destroyed an explosives laboratory in Logar province's Baraki Barak district. The lab contained more than 150 pounds of ingredients for homemade explosives, several hand grenades and two rocket-propelled grenade warheads.

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