Saturday, June 23, 2012

10 Taliban rebels surrender in W. Afghanistan

file photo
HERAT, Afghanistan, June 23 (Xinhua) -- A total of 10 Taliban rebels surrendered to the government in western Afghan province of Herat on Saturday, a provincial government spokesman said.

"A total of 10 Taliban fighters, including their commander Mullah Aziz Ahmad, have renounced violence and joined the peace and reintegration process in Guzara district on Saturday morning," spokesman Mohiddin Noori told Xinhua.

With the former insurgents' surrender, peace and stability would be further strengthened in several parts of the province, some 640 km west of capital Kabul, Noori added.

The Taliban insurgent group, which announced the launching of a spring offensive from May 3 against Afghan and NATO forces, has not to make comments yet.

The Afghan government set up a 70-member High Peace Council in the summer of 2010 to encourage Taliban to disarm and give up militancy against the government.

More than 3,700 anti-government insurgents have laid down their arms in Afghanistan since June 2011, according to officials.

from Xinhua
2012-06-23 18:28:27

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11 armed insurgents killed, 7 wounded and 51 others arrested by ANP

Publish Date: Jun 23, 2012

During the past 24 hours, Afghan National Police, Afghan National Army, NDS and Coalition Forces launched 10 joint clearance operations in Kabul, Nangarhar, Baghlan, Balkh, Kandahar, Helmand, Zabul, Khost, Paktiya and Ghazni provinces.
As a result of these operations, 11 armed insurgents were killed, seven wounded and 51 others were arrested by Afghan National Police.

Also, during these operations, Afghan National Police discovered and confiscated two AK-47 assault rifles, one rocket launcher, five anti-vehicle mines, 16 hand grenades, 15kg of opium, 30 kilograms of explosive material, 14 magazines, one vehicle and one motorcycle.

During the same 24 hour period, Afghan National Border Police discovered and defused one rocket launcher, three drums 15kg of full of explosives and nine different types of mines as a result of security operations in Bamyan, Helmand and Uruzgan provinces.

The 101 Kabul Zone National Police detained a man accused of theft in the 5th District of Kabul-City.

We encourage anyone who has information about suspicious activities to contact and protect the people.
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June 23., 2012. - ISAF Joint Command Morning Operational Update

KABUL, Afghanistan – Afghan forces, supported by coalition troops, conducted an operation to destroy narcotics production facilities in east Baghran, Helmand province, Wednesday.

The operation was planned and orchestrated by the Afghan forces.

As a result of the operation, Afghan forces seized 310 kilograms (660 pounds) of morphine base and 250 kilograms (550 pounds) of ammonium chloride which is used to refine opium into heroin. They also found 400 kilograms (880 pounds) of lime and 5,000 kilograms (11,000 pounds) of morphine waste along with drug processing equipment.

The chemicals and drugs were destroyed on site.

The operation was completed without any of the Afghan or coalition troops firing a shot or causing damage to civilian property.

In other International Security Assistance Force news throughout Afghanistan:


Afghan and coalition security forces confirmed two of the insurgents detained during an operation in Baghlan-e Jadid district, Baghlan province, Thursday, were Taliban leaders. The district police chief, Mohammad Kamen, identified one of the apprehended leaders as Mullah Ehsan, also known as Abid. He was an improvised explosive device expert responsible for multiple attacks against coalition forces. The second detained leader was involved in multiple attacks against Afghan and coalition forces and specialized in recruiting and training insurgents for suicide attacks.


An Afghan-led security force, supported by coalition troops, apprehended a Taliban leader in Maiwand district, Kandahar province, today. The detained Taliban leader was responsible for directing the use of improvised explosive device attacks against coalition forces in Kandahar and Helmand. The security force detained an additional suspected insurgent as a result of this operation.

In Tarnak wa Jaldak district, Zabul province, an Afghan and coalition security force conducted an operation to detain a Taliban leader today. The leader operates throughout Tarnak wa Jaldak and Qalat districts, directly participating in direct-fire and improvised explosive device attacks. He also distributes weapons and other aid to insurgents operating throughout the region. One additional suspected insurgent was detained along with some explosives and IED components as a result of this operation.

Afghan and coalition security forces confirmed one of the insurgents detained Tuesday during an operation in Nad’ Ali district, Helmand province, was a Taliban leader who directed attacks against coalition bases throughout the region. The apprehended leader executed senior-level plans involving direct-fire and improvised explosive device attacks against coalition forces. Tuesday’s operation also resulted in the detention of a Taliban leader who provided aid to insurgents in Helmand and recently delivered small-arms weapons and multiple vehicles to insurgents throughout the province.

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District security chief killed in Logar province

Districts of Logar. This image does not includ...
Districts of Logar. This image does not include Azra district, located to the east of Khoshi and Mohammad Agha. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
According to local authorities in eastern Logar province, district police chief for Baraki Barak was killed following militants attack.

Provincial governor spokesman Din Mohammad Darwish confirming the report said Baraki Barak district police chief Hazrat Mohammad was killed late Friday evening by Taliban militants in this province.

Mr. Darwish further added one of the security guard of Hazrat Mohammad was killed and another one was critically injured following the incident.

He also said at least two Taliban militants were killed following the clashes.

Taliban militants yet to comment regarding the report.

By Sajad - Sat Jun 23, 1:48 pm
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Around 100 school girls poisoned in northern Afghanistan

According to local authorities in northern Sar-e-Pul province, more than 100 school students were poisoned in this province and were taken to hospital for treatment purposes.

The officials further added the incident took place early Saturday morning at Hazrat Imam Zada Yahya high school and the main reason behind the poisoning of the students were unknown.

Provincial education chief Abdul Ghafoor Sar-e-Puli said an investigation has been started in this regard to find out the facts behind the incident.

This comes as several school girls were poisoned in Takhar, Bamiya and Kabul provinces of Afghanistan.

A number of suspects in this regard were recently detained by security forces in northern Takhar province, and the main motive behind the attack was to prevent Afghan families from sending their daughters to schools.

In the meantime Dr. Mohammad Haroon chief of the provincial hospital said around 118 school girls were taken to the hospital this morning who were poisoned and the health condition of majority of them are better and were sent back to their homes.

He said the health officials have not found any signs of toxicant gases, adding that the students were feeling headache, fever and nausea.

By Sajad - Sat Jun 23, 3:07 pm
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Yemeni security forces detain local al-Qaida leader

Map by Evan Centanni. (
ADEN, Yemen, June 22 (Xinhua) -- A local leader of Yemen-based al-Qaida branch was arrested by soldiers of Yemeni security apparatus on the outskirts of southern port city of Aden, a police officer said Friday.

Security soldiers managed to capture a leading member of the al- Qaida terrorist group suspected of links to a suicide bombing attack that killed a high-ranking military commander earlier this week in Aden, the local police officer told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

"Sami Dayyan, the captured al-Qaida leader, was behind assassinating Major General Salim Qatan, the commander of military forces in southern regions last Monday. He masterminded and planned the suicide operation," the police officer said.

"Two of his bodyguards were also arrested while they were attempting to sneak into Aden by a pick-up truck filled with explosives and suicide belts," he added.

Last Monday, the al-Qaida group claimed responsibility for assassinating Major General Salim Qatan, the commander of military forces in south Yemen.

The group also warned that more suicide attacks would follow if intensified air strikes and military campaigns against the al- Qaida hideouts across the southern regions do not stop.

Yemen's military presses a withering assault aiming at quelling a resurgent branch of al-Qaida which has increased its attacks on both Western and government targets in the Arabian Peninsula state.

The month-long army offensive forced the al-Qaida militants to flee several bastions in the country's restive southern and eastern provinces which they captured during last year's political turmoil.

The al-Qaida militants remain in control of the smaller town of Mahfad in Abyan and other cities in neighboring Shabwa province.

Fighting al-Qaida militants in restive south is one of several challenges confronting current President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi, who has promised to launch a national dialogue to settle disputes between all political factions. Also, he has sworn to uproot the Yemeni branch of al-Qaida.

from Xinhua
Editor: Deng Shasha
2012-06-22 21:52:09

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R.I.P. - Sgt. Jose Rodriguez

DOD Identifies Army Casualty
            The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier who was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.

            Sgt. Jose Rodriguez, 22, of Gustine, Calif., died June 19, in Kandahar province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered from enemy, small arms fire.

            Rodriquez was assigned to the 4th Battalion, 23rd Infantry Regiment, 2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division, Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash.

            For more information, media may contact the I Corps public affairs office at

253- 477-3048 or 253-370-9861.

Army soldier from Gustine killed in Afghanistan

By Adam Ashton
Tacoma News-Tribune

TACOMA -- A Stryker soldier from Gustine who was on his second deployment to a hostile corner of southern Afghanistan was shot to death Tuesday, the Defense Department announced Friday night.

Sgt. Jose Rodriguez, 22, served with the 4th Battalion, 23rd Infantry Regiment based out of Joint Base Lewis- McChord in Tacoma, Wash. That roughly 700-man unit has lost three other soldiers since it hit the ground in Kandahar province two months ago.

Rodriguez spent nearly his entire Army career at Lewis-McChord. He joined the Army in 2008 and was assigned to the base in January 2009. He deployed to Afghanistan in July of that year under the 5th Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division.

That tour was a challenging one. It was the first time the Army had sent its eight-wheeled Stryker vehicles to Afghanistan, and the brigade lost 37 soldiers in combat.

It prompted the Army to redesign the Stryker, giving the vehicle more armor and a different hull shape to deflect the impact of buried bombs. Since then, fewer soldiers have died inside Stryker vehicles.

Rodriguez's previous tour took place near the same ground where he was killed this week. He died in Maiwand District, a rural and volatile piece of Kandahar province where NATO forces are trying to build confidence in the Afghan government before U.S. combat troops withdraw from the country in 2014.

Soldiers who have served there describe it as a hub for the cultivation of heroin poppies. It also was the scene of the "kill team" homicides, which were carried out by 5th Brigade soldiers during the 2009-10 deployment. Four soldiers were convicted of killing three Afghan civilians in combatlike incidents they staged in Maiwand.

Rodriguez's battalion is part of what is called the 2nd Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division. It is essentially the same brigade with which he fought three years ago. The Army renamed it as the 2nd Brigade in 2010.

The 2nd Brigade sent 4,000 soldiers to Afghanistan this spring. Rodriguez was among just 642 veterans of the 2009-10 tour to join the current deployment. His battalion fought with distinction in 2009-10, and received a presidential commendation for its service alongside Marine units.

He has received the Army Achievement Medal and the Army Good Conduct Medal. Rodriguez is the 15th soldier from Lewis-McChord to die in Afghanistan this year.
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Blasts kill 13, wound 100 in Iraqi market

At least 13 people were killed and more than 100 wounded on Friday when two roadside bombs exploded in a Baghdad market, Iraqi police and hospital sources said, in the latest attack targeting Shi’ite Muslims this month.

A wave of bombings this month mainly targeting Shi’ite pilgrims and shrines has killed more than 130 people and fuelled fears that Iraq could slip back into sectarian bloodletting of the kind that has receded since it peaked in 2006-07.

Tensions have run high since U.S. troops left in December as Shi’ite, Sunni and Kurdish political factions vie for power.

The first explosion struck Husseiniya, a market in a mainly Shi’ite area on the outskirts of the Iraqi capital, where people were shopping for groceries and other goods, sources said.

The second blast followed soon afterwards as security forces and people gathered to tend the casualties from the first.

“Fruit and vegetables have been scattered everywhere. Some children were wounded,” said Mudhaffar Khalaf, a policeman at the scene. “We have started to evacuate the injured people.”

On Monday, a suicide bomber killed at least 15 mourners at a Shi’ite funeral in the northern city of Baquba. Twin car bombs killed at least 26 Shi’ite pilgrims on Saturday.

The attacks come as Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki tries to fend off attempts by Sunni, Kurd and some Shi’ite rivals to organize a vote of no-confidence against him.

His opponents accuse the Shi’ite leader of trying to consolidate his power at their expense.

Earlier on Friday, gunmen in a speeding car using silenced weapons fired on a police checkpoint in Baghdad’s southwestern Bayaa district, killing three policemen, local police and hospital sources said.

Three civilians were also wounded when a roadside bomb exploded near an army checkpoint in Mosul, a local police source said.

by Reuters, Baghdad
Last Updated: Fri Jun 22, 2012 14:04 pm (KSA) 11:04 am (GMT)

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R.I.P. - Tom Boyle

Barrington Hills man killed in Afghanistan

A Barrington Hills veteran of both the Chicago Police Department and Vietnam War is being remembered for his lifelong courage and heroism after being killed Tuesday in a firefight in Afghanistan.

Tom Boyle, 62, had left the comforts of a Barrington Hills retirement far behind to serve as a contracted law enforcement professional in Afghanistan, where he was providing security and training Afghanis to do the same.

Tom Boyle poses for a photograph with a local boy while serving as a law enforcement professional in Iraq. Boyle, 62, of Barrington Hills, was killed Tuesday during a firefight in Afghanistan.

He previously had served in the same capacity during two tours each in Kosovo and Iraq, Boyle's friend and former employer Steve Kirby said.
Kirby attributed Boyle's calling to this type of work to his strong moral convictions.
“Tom didn't need to do this,” Kirby said. “He was very financially secure.”
While a Chicago police officer, Boyle was personally responsible for capturing brothers Tyrone and Larry Strickland, who were later convicted of murdering Wheeling Police Officer Kenneth Dawson in November 1985. Boyle also recovered the weapon used in Dawson's fatal shooting.
“Thomas Boyle will always have a special place in the Wheeling Police Department,” Wheeling Police Chief William Benson said Thursday. “He is truly, truly a hero. It's a tragic story.”
Boyle was born in 1949, grew up in Chicago and joined the Marine Corps just out of high school, Kirby said. He served in Vietnam from 1968 to 1969 and earned the Cross of Gallantry.
Boyle then joined the Chicago Police Department in 1970 and served for 30 years before retiring.
Upon his retirement, he went to work for Kirby's private detective agency in Elmhurst. The safety of those he served with, particularly new or younger people, was especially important to him, Kirby said.
“Tom was a great mentor for us,” he added.
He eventually left to begin working as a security contractor overseas. Kirby joked that his business' line of work may have been a bit boring for Boyle.
Boyle's wife, Pauline, said her husband was always driven to serve his country in the best possible way, but didn't always feel like he was fulfilling his potential — even with the Chicago police.
“I think Steve hit the nail on the head,” Pauline said. “I think (Tom) realized he wasn't making the difference that he wanted to.”
On the day she learned of her husband's death, Pauline had gone to the post office to send a doll and stuffed animal to a little girl in Afghanistan who had touched her husband's heart. In all the countries he served, the safety and well-being of children was always near the top of his mind, she said.
“This was not unusual for him to do this every month or every other month,” Pauline said of the gift delivery.
She said her husband had been working as a law enforcement contractor on and off for the past decade, sometimes being gone for two years at a time. It seemed to fulfill his desire to do good.
“It was rewarding,” she said. “He felt he was accomplishing something. He's just a good American. He's a patriot. He loved this country.”
Though Boyle did not pursue higher education, he had a need and capacity to educate himself to be more effective in any new pursuit, Kirby said. For example, before Boyle went out to Kosovo, he immersed himself in knowledge of the region's culture and languages, Kirby said.
Boyle is also survived by his son, Ryan.
Visitation will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, June 30 at Davenport Family Funeral Home at 149 W. Main St. in Barrington. Services will begin at 4 p.m. that day, immediately after the visitation.
Kirby and Benson will be among the speakers at the service, Pauline said.

By Eric Peterson, Article updated: 6/22/2012 5:44 AM

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