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Forces Strike Insurgents Near Afghan-Pakistani Border

Special to American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Jan. 11, 2007 – Troops from NATO's International Security Assistance Force and Afghan National Army soldiers engaged and killed a significant number of insurgents last night in Afghanistan's Bermel district, in Paktika province, NATO officials reported.

Initial post-battle assessments indicate as many as 150 insurgents were killed, officials said.

Two large groups of insurgents were observed infiltrating Paktika province from Pakistan. The insurgents were monitored, tracked and subsequently engaged after they entered Afghanistan, through the coordinated use of both air and ground fire in a series of engagements along the sparsely populated border region of Bermel district, officials said.

The insurgents had been observed gathering in Pakistan and had crossed the border prior to launching an attack against ANA and ISAF forces in the region. Pakistani military liaison officers were kept fully informed throughout the operation, officials said.

“The enemy cannot hide from Afghan and ISAF forces,” said Army Maj. Gen. Benjamin Freakley, ISAF Regional Command-East commander. “Day and night, we’re employing every available means to search for, identify and destroy the enemies of Afghanistan.

“Last night was a good example of the effects the combined efforts of ISAF and Afghan forces can bring to bear on the enemy,” the general said.

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