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Troops Seize Weapons, Thwart Insurgents in Afghanistan

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Oct. 12, 2007 – Coalition and Afghan forces seized a weapons cache and thwarted an insurgent ambush in Afghanistan recently, military officials said.

The Afghan National Army and coalition force discovered an ammunition cache today in Nijrab Valley of the Tag Ab district in Kapisa province, military officials said.

Citizens informed Afghan and coalition forces of a possible ammunition cache in their area. The hybrid force, led by Afghan troops, searched the suspected area and recovered 17 rocket-propelled grenades and 13 rifle rounds.

Afghans who help lead coalition forces to munitions caches are compensated through the Small Rewards Program, which was created to encourage Afghan citizens to help rid the country of weapons used by insurgents and foreign fighters.

“Afghan citizens have taken an active role in improving the security and stability within their villages by facilitating the recovery of munitions caches,” said Army Maj. Chris Belcher, a Combined Joint Task Force 82 spokesman. “We value all credible information provided by Afghan citizens and protect their confidentiality.”

On Oct. 9, 10 Taliban fighters attacked coalition forces near Qanat-e-Hazrat village in the Qalat district of Zabul province as troops patrolled the area.

Coalition forces returned fire and maneuvered against the enemy forces. Enemy forces continued their attack and attempted to reinforce their positions with additional fighters. Coalition aircraft engaged enemy positions and fighters under the direction of ground forces there.

“The enemy forces have learned they cannot challenge the Afghan National Army or coalition forces,” Belcher said. “With the support of the Afghan citizens, the Afghan national security forces and coalition forces will maintain peace and stability to (Afghanistan).”

(Compiled from Joint Task Force 82 news releases.)

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