Afghan SOF raids and U.S. airstrikes target weapons facilitators

NATO Special Operations Component Command-Afghanistan
Story by Maj. Anthony Mayne

Date: 03.09.2018
Posted: 03.09.2018 04:51
News ID: 268737
Afghan Special Operators destroy Taliban explosives compound in Paktika

A combination of Afghan Special Security Forces offensive operations and U.S. airstrikes eliminated key weapons facilitators and high profile attack planners from the Taliban, Tehrik-I Taliban, Haqqani, and ISIS-K this week.
A U.S. airstrike eliminated nine ISIS-K fighters during a terrorist gathering in Darzab district, Jowzjan, Mar. 3.

On Mar. 4, ASSF raid resulted in the detention of nine suspected members of a Taliban network in Bati Kot district, Nangarhar. This Taliban cell is responsible for attacks against Afghan National Police.

A U.S. airstrike killed eight TTP fighters in Bermal district, Paktika, Mar. 4. The insurgents were loyal to deputy TTP commanders Sajna Meshud and Rehan. Airstrikes eliminated the duo on Jan. 27 and Feb. 22, respectively.

On Mar. 5, Afghan SOF detained Mohammad Ayoub, a Taliban IED planner, in Jalalabad City, Nangarhar.

ASSF elements detained Karmizullah and seven suspected Haqqani fighters in Matum district, Khost, Mar 5. Two days later in Matum, Afghan SOF detained two additional Haqqani facilitators, Najibullah and Amirullah, in Matum, Khost.

Led by the Paktika Provincial Special Unit, the Afghan special operators detained three Taliban fighters, and destroyed more than 49 kg of homemade explosives and 223 kg of explosive components and precursors in Nurakai Bazaar, Paktika province, Mar. 7.

On Mar. 8, ASSF elements killed Baitullah and a key associate responsible for distribution of Taliban IED materials in Nangarhar during a raid in Surkh Rod, Nangarhar. The special operators killed nine additional Taliban fighters and detained an additional eight-suspected Taliban. Afghan SOF also seized a cache of homemade explosives, IED materials, automatic weapons, and ammunition.

Over the winter, the Taliban and other threat networks devolved their tactics from attacks on Afghan Defense and Security Forces to acts of gross violence against civilians. Afghanistan and the international community answered the anti-government elements with an increased commitment to set the conditions for a reconciliation with insurgents as exemplified by participation in the Kabul Process on Feb. 28, and military decisive action against those resolved to foster instability.