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Troops Repel Two Ambushes in Afghanistan

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Nov. 4, 2007 – Coalition and Afghan troops repelled two Taliban-led ambushes in Afghanistan recently, killing an unknown number of enemy fighters, military officials said.

Afghan national security forces and coalition forces thwarted an insurgent ambush yesterday during a combat patrol in the Musa Qaleh Wadi region of Helmand province. Taliban fighters fired on the patrol with small-arms fire, rocket-propelled grenades and mortars from a trench line, military officials said. The combined force repelled the initial attack with small arms and crew served weapons.

As the insurgents reinforced positions with additional fighters, the ground force commander requested coalition close air support. Precision-guided air component operators fired munitions on Taliban positions, killing several insurgents and ending the ambush.

“This is another glaring example of the Taliban’s efforts to erode peace in the Musa Qaleh region, but the (Afghan national security forces) and coalition forces obstructed their plans,” said Army Maj. Chris Belcher, Combined Joint Task Forces 82 spokesman.

Combined forces foiled a separate attack by extremist Taliban fighters Nov. 2 near a coalition base in Oruzgan province.

The insurgents fired 82 mm mortars that narrowly missed the firebase. Shortly afterward, the heavily-defended firebase received notice that several enemy fighters were moving to a defensive position nearby.

The enemy fighters attacked using small-arms and machine-gun fire, and 82 mm mortars in the morning attack. The Afghan national security forces and coalition forces returned fire and maneuvered against the enemy fighters, who continued their attack and attempted to reinforce their positions with additional fighters.

Coalition aircraft, under the direction of ground forces, engaged the fighters and repelled the attack.

“The disorganized attack is yet another example of the Taliban’s inability to conduct effective operations against ANSF and coalition forces,” Belcher said.

(Compiled from Combined Joint Task Force 82 news releases.)

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