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Press Release | Feb. 24, 2009

Afghan National Army, Coalition Forces kill 16 militants in Helmand

By None , U.S. Forces - Afghanistan

PRESS RELEASE

U.S. Forces Afghanistan

February 24, 2009

Release Number: 20092402-01

Afghan National Army, Coalition Forces kill 16 militants in Helmand

KABUL, Afghanistan - Afghan National Army soldiers assisted by Coalition Forces killed 16 militants while conducting a combat reconnaissance patrol in Helmand Province Feb. 23.

Afghan National Army and Coalition Forces were conducting a routine patrol when their convoy came under heavy and accurate small-arms fire from numerous militant fighting positions.  The Afghan National Army and Coalition Forces responded with small-arms fire.  The militants would not be subdued and began firing mortars and rocket-propelled grenades at the combined forces.

As the threat escalated, the combined forces responded with several precision strikes to kill the militants.  Prior to the strikes, the combined element assured there were no non-combatants in the area. 

Following the strike, the Afghan National Army cleared a compound from which the militants had been firing.  The combined elements discovered improvised explosive device-making material, which they destroyed in place.

No Afghan National Army, Coalition Forces or non-combatant casualties were reported.

"This engagement was yet another blow to the militants, who are quickly losing their ability to operate in Helmand Province," said U.S. Forces-Afghanistan Spokesperson, Col. Greg Julian.  "The Afghan National

Army is working to rid Afghanistan of extremists who are only trying to destabilize the country and sabotage Afghan freedom."

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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 93 (0) 707 355 965

USFOR-A-MediaRelations@afghan.swa.army.mil