Returning fire
Spc. Chad Summerfield, 3rd Platoon, Company D, 1st Battalion, 168th Infantry Regiment, Task Force Lethal, returns fire on insurgents who initiated an attack on the unit and Afghan National Army soldiers Jan 9.

KABUL, Afghanistan, Jan. 20, 2011 -- Afghan and coalition forces completed another multi-day deliberate clearing operation aimed at disrupting the Taliban's freedom of movement in northern Afghanistan, killing more than 10 insurgents in Faryab province, Jan. 18 and yesterday.

The joint security force is continuing efforts to disrupt enemy safe havens, where Taliban leaders use villages throughout the area to conduct operational planning and facilitate their attacks. This operation focused on an area near Kwaji Kinti village in Qaisar district.

Afghan and coalition forces cleared more than 20 buildings suspected of insurgent activity in the area. Throughout the operation, Afghan forces called for all occupants to exit the compounds peacefully before the joint security force cleared and secured the areas.

"The Afghan and coalition force clearing operation has pushed Taliban enemies out of the Kwaji Kinti village allowing the residents of the village to experience safety, knowing they will no longer be controlled by insurgents," Col. Rafael Torres, International Security Assistance Force Joint Command Combined Joint Operations Center director said. "This clearing operation will allow the villagers an opportunity to work toward maintaining their own governance and security free from intimidation and terrorization of Taliban insurgents."

On Jan. 18, as the security force arrived at the first targeted building, multiple armed combatants engaged with AK-47s and Rocket-Propelled Grenades. The security force returned fire, killing several armed combatants. The security force was unable to conduct a search of the area due to insurgents in the building shooting at the force.

The security force then received machine gun fire from multiple insurgents at what was assessed to be a Taliban command and control enemy fighting position. They returned fire, killing several armed combatants. The security force was able to identify a machine gun, Rocket-Propelled Grenade launcher and ammunition inside the building.

After determining there were no civilians present and that no other options or means of engagement to effectively counter the threat, coalition forces destroyed the Taliban fighting position with a precision air strike. The security force has assessed the building is no longer usable. The building had been the local school before the Taliban took control of it.

Yesterday, as the security force was clearing another building, insurgents once again engaged the security force with Rocket-Propelled Grenades and small-arms fire. The security force returned fire, killing several additional armed insurgents.

Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16