ANP and Coalition forces disrupt al-Qaeda cell in Khost

Release No: UNRELEASED Dec. 19, 2008 PRINT | E-MAIL


December 19, 2008

Release Number 20081912-01

ANP and Coalition forces disrupt al-Qaeda cell in Khost

KABUL, Afghanistan – Afghan National Police and Coalition forces killed three armed militants and detained five suspected militants, including the targeted individual during an operation to disrupt the al-Qaeda terrorist network in Khost province, Tuesday.

The combined operation in Khost District, located approximately 150 km southeast of Kabul, netted an al-Qaeda liaison believed to facilitate the movement of foreign fighters into Afghanistan to conduct terrorist activities.  The detained al-Qaeda liaison is believed to be in direct contact with al-Qaeda leaders, outside of Afghanistan, coordinating activities aimed at destabilizing the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and harming innocent civilians and Coalition forces.

During the operation, the combined force encountered one militant armed with an AK-47 assault rifle who attempted to engage the force.  The combined force engaged the militant with small-arms and killed him.

Additionally, three militants, two armed with AK-47s and one with a shotgun, attempted to maneuver on and engaged the combined force as they searched the compound.  The combined force returned fire killing two militants and wounding the third, which was later revealed to be a female.

Medical personnel on site provided immediate care to the wounded female militant and evacuated her to a Coalition forces’ hospital for further care.  Respecting cultural sensitivities, the combined force allowed the female militant’s husband to accompany her to the hospital.  She is expected to recover.

A search of the compound revealed multiple AK-47s, hand grenades, pistols, one shotgun and other military equipment.

“The ANP and coalition elements had cordoned off the area and the militants were asked to surrender, but refused and a gun fight erupted,” said Col. Gregory Julian, U.S. Forces Afghanistan spokesperson.

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United States Forces Afghanistan’s mission, in coordination with NATO’s International Security Assistance Force, is to conduct operations to defeat terrorist networks and insurgents by developing effective governance and building the Afghan National Security Force.  Effective security throughout the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan facilitates continued regional stability and increases economic development for the people of Afghanistan.

Contact Information – US Forces Afghanistan Public Affairs Office

Tel +93 (0) 799 51 2919 or cell phone 0093 (0) 788 189 049