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Afghan, Coalition Forces Kill Militants, Disrupt Bomb Networks

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Jan. 7, 2009 – Coalition forces and Afghan commandos killed 38 militants and seized multiple weapons caches today and yesterday during operations to disrupt bomb networks in Afghanistan’s Farah and Laghman provinces.

Coalition forces and Afghan commandos today killed six militants during a raid on a compound in Farah province’s Kakhi Safyed district.

Among the militants killed were a leader believed to have conducted attacks on Afghan and coalition forces and the alleged chief bodyguard for a high-level Taliban commander. The bodyguard is suspected of providing bombs and bomb-making materials to militant forces in the province’s Bala Baluk district.

During the operation, militants engaged forces with small-arms fire from inside the compound. Forces returned fire, killing the militants, while protecting local residents.

A coalition soldier received a minor gunshot wound, and a commando was injured during the fight. The commando was evacuated to a local hospital for treatment. Both men are expected to recover. No civilian casualties were reported.

Forces later seized and destroyed a weapons cache that contained rocket-propelled grenades, AK-47 assault rifles, sniper-rifle systems, machine guns and ammunition.

Yesterday, coalition forces killed 32 armed insurgents and detained a suspected militant during an operation to disrupt the Taliban’s roadside bomb network in Laghman province.

Coalition forces were targeting a Taliban cell in Alishang district, northeast of the capital city of Kabul, suspected of carrying out roadside-bomb attacks against civilians and coalition forces throughout the region.

During the operation, about 75 armed militants engaged forces with small-arms fire from rooftops and alleyways. Coalition forces returned small-arms fire while protecting several villagers. No civilian casualties were reported.

Forces seized two large caches of weapons, explosives and other roadside bomb-making materials that included AK-47 assault rifles, rocket-propelled grenades, PKM machine guns and blocks of explosives bundled together. The forces destroyed the caches.

(Compiled from U.S. Forces Afghanistan news releases.)

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