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American Forces Press Service

Afghan, Coalition Troops Kill, Detain Insurgents

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, June 24, 2007 – Afghan and coalition forces killed more than 32 insurgents and detained 20 others in Afghanistan over the past three days, military officials reported.

Early yesterday, Afghan and coalition forces detained 20 militants in operations against al Qaeda militants at three compounds in the Giro district of Ghazni province. The detainees are being held for questioning.

Coalition forces acted on credible intelligence that pointed to the various compounds as sheltering al Qaeda fighters. The insurgents fired rocket propelled grenades and machine guns at the coalition forces as they approached one of the compounds; the forces returned fire, killing the assailants. No civilians were injured in the operations.

While searching the compound from which the attack was launched, combined forces discovered a Russian-made machine gun with 250 rounds of ammunition, an AK-47 assault rifle with four full magazines, and two fragmentation grenades.

Elsewhere in Afghanistan yesterday, enemy fighters engaged Afghan national army members and coalition forces near Langar Village in the Washer District of Helmand province.

Combined forces repelled the initial attack with small arms and then requested close air support to suppress the enemy fighters.

The battle continued throughout the day and additional enemy fighters reinforced enemy positions in the area. Combined forces maneuvered to defendable positions and then directed coalition helicopters and close air support aircraft to drop munitions on positively identified enemy positions. More than 12 enemy fighters were killed in the prolonged battle, military officials said.

One coalition soldier and one Afghan national army member died in the fighting and two coalition forces and one Afghan army member were wounded. The wounded forces were evacuated to a nearby facility for medical treatment. There were no Afghan civilian injures reported.

“Afghan national army and coalition forces are currently fighting to stop the spread of the Taliban to the western portions of Afghanistan,” said Army Maj. Chris Belcher, a Combined Joint Task Force 82 spokesman. “This attempt at westward expansion on the part of the Taliban will not be successful.”

A day earlier, soldiers from 2nd Kandak, 1st Brigade, 209th Afghan national army corps and coalition members received machine gun fire from an unknown number of enemy fighters near the village of Sayed Nabi in the Shah Wali Kot District of Kandahar province.

Combined forces returned fire and then pursued the enemy attackers as they attempted to escape. Troops killed nearly 20 enemy fighters during the seven hour firefight that ensued. No Afghan civilian injuries were reported.

Elsewhere in the Shaheed Hasas District of Oruzgan province, a small number of enemy fighters fired multiple rockets at a 205th Afghan national army corps and coalition base. Combined forces returned fire and then quickly maneuvered on the enemy’s position, killing several fighters near the Mjani-Do village.

“Afghan national army and coalition soldiers will continue to pursue and defeat all enemy fighters who threaten the government of Afghanistan,” Belcher said. “With the support and resolve of the Afghan people, enemy fighters will be unable to derail the efforts of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan.”

(Compiled from Combined Joint Task Force 82 News Releases.)

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