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Afghan Commandos, USSOF seize insurgent weapons inventory

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The 7th Commando Kandak, advised and assisted by U. S. Special Operations Forces, discovered 60 improvised explosive devices in Nahr-E Saraj District, during partnered operations, which ran from April 18-22.

The Afghan led force discovered two weapons caches in the village of Qaleh Ye Gaz containing 60 completed pressure plate improvised explosive devices, twelve 60 millimeter mortar rounds, six AK-47 assault rifles, three 40 millimeter rounds, two 40 gallon jugs of homemade explosives, and two British rifles with ammunition.

The partnered force also located two IED making manuals, one 40 millimeter grenade launcher, one rocket propelled grenade launcher, one Soviet made machinegun with a can of ammunition, one chest rig, one land mine, and one grenade.

“The weapons were located in a staging area for insurgent operations conducted on the west side of the Helmand river,” USSOF liaison officer for the team said. “There were enough IEDs for insurgents to conduct operations against coalition forces for months.”

PPIEDs are the most commonly used IED in Afghanistan because they are easy to make and very effective, the Special Operations Task Force West Joint Expeditionary Team advisor said.

“Pressure plate IEDs are nonselective,” the JET advisor said. “They are a danger to whoever passes by.”

The PPIEDs that were located in Qaleh Ye Gaz were packaged, wired, and ready to be implemented, Capt. Adam Thuen, SOTF-West counter IED officer said. By finding them before they could be emplaced many lives were saved.

“It’s a significant find,” Thuen said. “The team and the intelligence section did a great job in locating this cache.”

No civilians were hurt and no property damage was reported during these operations.

Article by Staff Sgt. Joshua Joyce, Combined Joint Special Operations Task Force – Afghanistan Media Operations Center