Monday, May 20, 2013

SAS troops capture Taliban commander

British Special Air Service (British Special Forces) have captured the Taliban leader thought to be responsible for the roadside bomb that killed three British soldiers last month. This article from Express.

The insurgent leader, who has not been named for operational reasons, commanded seven groups of Taliban fighters and bombers across southern Afghanistan.

The dawn raid, carried out with Afghan forces, took place in the Marjah region near Nad-e-Ali, close to the British base in Lashkar Gah.

It is believed the Taliban leader, who sources confirmed had regularly travelled between Helmand and Pakistan, had been hunted for a year after being linked to at least three other attacks.

Corporal William Savage, Fusilier Samuel Flint of the 2nd Battalion, Royal Regiment of Scotland and Private Robert Hetherington, of the 7th Battalion, Royal Regiment of Scotland, died when their Mastiff vehicle struck a roadside bomb in Helmand last month.

A spokesman for the International Security Assistance Force confirmed the Taliban leader had been involved in “all stages of operations, including procuring weapons and ammunition, planning attacks and executing those plans”.

The successful operation came as British Special Forces from Task Force 42 – consisting of the SAS, SBS, Special Forces Support Group and Special Reconnaissance Regiment – increase their footprint in Helmand in an attempt to disrupt increasingly bold Taliban attacks.

Ten days ago insurgents fired rockets towards Camp Bastion from 20 miles away but no one was hurt.

A Special Forces team is trying to track them down.

Special Forces are increasingly relied upon to take the strain after regular troops cease offensive operations leading up to 2014’s withdrawal.

British troops now hold just 12 bases in Helmand.

Colonel Richard Kemp, former commander of British troops in Afghanistan, said: “British Special Forces fill the vacuum in Helmand. They are doing sterling work.”

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