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    ANDSF retakes Nawa district center during operation Maiwand Four



    Story by Sgt. Justin Updegraff 

    Resolute Support Headquarters

    Operation Maiwand Four began during the early morning hours of July 15 as the Afghan National Security and Defense Forces began their movement to the Nawa district to retake the district center with the aid of coalition air support.

    After numerous air strikes, maneuvers under fire and disabling of more than 100 improvised explosive devices, ANDSF forces retook the district center of Nawa from the Taliban in Helmand Province, July 17, 2017.

    “The goal of this operation was to clear the Nawa district from the enemies, from the Taliban,” said Col. Zahirgul Moqbal, the commanding officer of the Afghan Border Police. “[Overall, our goal was] to retake the district from the Taliban.”
    Nawa is an indispensable district in Helmand Province, said Moqbal. The agricultural industry in the district provides a positive impact on the economy in Helmand and around Lashkar Gah city.

    Under the watchful presence of the Afghan National Army scan eagle and coalition unmanned aerial systems, F-16s and AH-64 Apaches set conditions, conducted air strikes and covered the flanks of the maneuver elements to decrease the amount of friction felt by the ground forces and allowed freedom of maneuver.

    “The air support provided by the coalition forces increased the morale amongst the Afghan Uniform Police personnel,” said Lt. Col. Mohammad Omar, the acting operations officer with the 505th Zone National Police. “Something that they never had in the past fighting with the enemies.”

    As part of an expeditionary advising package, Marines with Task Force Southwest are advising ANDSF to improve command and control, battle tracking, intelligence, maneuver, fires integration, and leadership evaluation and development.

    "So far during this operation we have seen some significant gains in leadership and maneuver from the Ministry of Interior forces, particularly the Afghan Border and National Police," said Col. Matthew Reid, deputy commander of Task Force Southwest. "The vast majority of the ABP officers are from Helmand, many from Nawa, and they are aggressively fighting to clear insurgents from Nawa district."

    Moqbal said that Nawa has a significant impact on the security of Lashkar Gah, especially for the airfield. Retaking the Nawa district means that civilian aircraft have the ability to safely land at the Bost Airfield, right outside of Lashkar Gah.

    “Nawa plays a large role in the security of Lashkar Gah because it is one of the larger towns that’s just south of Lashkar Gah,” said Col. David Gibbs, the commanding officer for team police, Task Force Southwest. “Nawa is a major north-south route for transportation, so as people travel north, they would typically travel through Nawa. From that perspective it’s a very significant geographic location.”

    “It was a very successful operation in Helmand,” said Moqbal. “Defeating the enemy in Nawa means defeating the enemy in Helmand.”

    ANDSF forces plan to setup security check points throughout the district center and on route to Lashkar Gah city to ensure security, stability and quality of life to the people of Helmand Province.



    Date Taken: 07.17.2017
    Date Posted: 07.17.2017 10:21
    Story ID: 241390
    Location: NAWA DISTRICT, AF 

    Web Views: 207
    Downloads: 0