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Combined Force Captures Taliban Facilitator

Compiled from International Security Assistance Force Joint Command News Releases

WASHINGTON, Dec. 27, 2011 – An Afghan-led and coalition-supported security force captured a Taliban facilitator during an operation in the Pul-e ‘Alam district of Afghanistan’s Logar province today, military officials reported.

The facilitator moved weapons and explosives used in attacks against coalition forces. He also allegedly was involved in a car bomb attack in Logar province that killed one civilian and injured nine others.

One additional suspected insurgent was detained during the operation.

In other Afghanistan operations today:

-- An Afghan-led force in Helmand province’s Garm Ser district captured a Taliban weapons facilitator who moved weapons throughout the province. No civilians were injured.

-- In the Zharay district of Kandahar province, an Afghan-led force detained two suspects while searching for a Taliban leader who moves supplies, emplaces roadside bombs and coordinates attacks against coalition forces.

In Afghanistan operations yesterday:

-- A coalition patrol discovered one anti-personnel mine, two rocket-propelled grenade warheads, two 82 mm mortar rounds, and homemade bomb-making components in Ghazni province’s Andar district.

-- A coalition patrol discovered four 82 mm mortars, one landmine and bomb components in the Now Zad district of Helmand province.

-- A combined force captured a Haqqani network facilitator and two other suspects in the Bak district of Khost province.

The facilitator supplied explosives to insurgents and conducted attacks against coalition forces.

-- A combined force in Baghlan province’s Baghlan-e Jadid district detained one suspect while searching for a Taliban leader who plans direct fire and roadside bomb attacks against Afghan forces.

In Dec. 25 Afghanistan operations:

-- International Security Assistance Force Commander Marine Corps Gen. John R. Allen traveled across Afghanistan to wish troops a happy holiday. “I know we can’t be with our families on Christmas Day, but I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else, if I can’t be with my family, than standing here with you and serving with you,” Allen told troops at Forward Operating Base Shindand in Herat province.

“It’s not every day you get to see a general come here, especially on Christmas Day, to tell everybody they are doing a good job,” Marine Corps Sgt. John Mohlenhoff said.

Allen also visited troops at Camp Stone and FOB Andraskan in Herat province, and Camp Marmal and Camp Spann near Mazar-e-Sharif in Balkh province. “In a very real sense, this is a family you’ll never forget because of the things that you have shared, things that you do, and the cause in which we’re all engaged,” Allen said. “For the rest of your lives, you will share this moment together -- a moment when you were a part of something bigger than yourselves. Every one of you here is contributing to the liberation of a country and giving Afghanistan hope.”

-- A coalition force discovered a drug cache containing more than 900 pounds of marijuana in the Panjwa’i district of Kandahar province. All of the drugs were destroyed.

-- A combined force killed two insurgents and seized bomb-making material and grenades during a search for a Taliban leader in the Baghlan-e Jadid district of Baghlan province. A third insurgent died after self-detonating a grenade. The leader trains insurgents to use roadside bombs and provides explosives for use in attacks against Afghan forces.

-- In the Nahr-e Saraj district of Helmand province, a combined force captured a Taliban leader and detained several other suspected insurgents. The insurgent leader provided equipment and trained fighters in the province.

-- A combined force in Kandahar province’s Zharay district detained two suspected insurgents and seized about five pounds of black tar heroin while searching for a Taliban facilitator who moves explosives and weapons throughout southern Afghanistan.

-- In the Nadir Shar Kot district of Khost province, a combined force captured a Haqqani network facilitator, detained one other suspect and seized multiple weapons. The facilitator moved and stored weapons throughout the area.

-- A combined force in Nangarhar province’s Pachir Wa Agam district captured a Taliban facilitator. who distributed weapons and munitions to insurgents for use in attacks in Jalalabad.

-- Allen, ISAF commander, condemned the suicide attack on a funeral ceremony in Takhar province that reportedly killed numerous civilians, including a member of the Afghan parliament, and wounded many others.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with the families of those affected with the loss of life and injuries in today's barbaric attack," the general said. "These attackers are cowards, callously targeting and killing families and friends who had gathered to mourn a loved one. Those responsible for this shameful act must only be interested in destruction, alienating themselves from the Afghan people. They are neither Afghan nor are they true Muslims.”

In Dec. 24 Afghanistan operations:

-- –Allen extended his and his command’s sincere condolences to the Afghan families who lost loved ones in the Baghlan province mine tragedy.

"Our hearts go out to the families of this tragedy and we will, of course, stand ready to provide any additional assistance necessary if called upon by the Afghan government," the general said.

The collapse of the mine in Nahrin district claimed the lives of 13 Afghans and injured another 12 workers. Provincial Reconstruction Team Pul-E Khumri provided medical and humanitarian support.

-- Combined forces discovered two drug caches in Kandahar province. The first drug cache was found in the Spin Boldak district and contained 11 tons of hashish. All of the drugs were destroyed and one person was detained. The second cache was discovered in the Panjwa’i district and contained about 300 pounds of marijuana. The drugs were destroyed.

-- A combined force seized four rocket-propelled grenades and some small-arms ammunition in Uruzgan province’s Tarin Kot district.

In Dec. 23 Afghanistan operations:

-- Afghan soldiers with the 1st Brigade, 205th Afghan National Army Corps completed a week-long independent operation in the Panjwa'i, district of Kandahar province. Operation Hope Hero 58 was the first of its kind in Kandahar province where the Afghan National Army has taken the lead in an operation to include planning, coordinating and executing the mission separately from their U.S. partners. The Afghan army worked closely with Afghan police, Afghan National Civil Order Police and Afghan National Defense Services to conduct clearing operations in the Kenjekak and Zangabad villages of the Panjwa'i district of southern Kandahar province. During the six-day operation, more than 400 Afghan National Security Forces discovered multiple caches containing a large amount of bomb-making material to include ammunitions, more than 10 pressure plates, ignition systems and more than 1,000 pounds of homemade explosives -- enough material to make more than 60 homemade bombs.

In Dec. 22 Afghanistan operations:

-- A combined force seized a drug cache containing 910 pounds of marijuana in the Daman district of Kandahar province. The drugs were destroyed.

-- In the Zurmat district of Paktia province, a combined patrol found 20 anti-personnel mines and 60 blocks of explosives.

-- Also in Zurmat, a combined patrol found five RPGs, three 82 mm rockets, 440 rounds of small-arms ammunition and one radio-controlled receiver. Security forces destroyed all of the items.

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