British forces working alongside Afghan soldiers have uncovered a sophisticated improvised explosive device (IED) factory hidden in a compound in Helmand.
The haul of pressure plates, explosives and detonators is thought to be one of the biggest found by a joint ISAF and Afghan operation.
Some of the bomb-making equipment discovered by the British and Afghan forces in Agah Khel Kalay, Helmand province. Picture: Crown Copyright/MOD 2011
Troops from 1st Battalion The Rifles (1 RIFLES), 45 Commando Royal Marines (45 Cdo RM), 4th Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland (4 SCOTS), the Counter-IED Task Force (C-IED TF), and Afghan Warriors from 6th Kandak of 3/215 Brigade of the ANA, all played a part in helping to locate the components which were found in Agah Khel Kalay, a small village on the southern bank of the Nahr-e-Burgha Canal.
The British and Afghan forces have only been operating in the area for a few weeks, following Operation OMID HAFT which expanded ISAF’s presence into what had been an insurgent stronghold. Since then, the troops have been maintaining security from their newly built Checkpoint (CP) called CP Salaang.
British forces team plans the strike operation. Picture: Crown Copyright/MOD 2011
Already, their presence is having an impact. The initial information about a potential bomb factory was provided to the soldiers from local people, who are now less intimidated since the insurgents were pushed out of the area. It was then verified by the intelligence specialists of Y Squadron 30 Commando Royal Marines, and 4 SCOTS were directed to search a compound believed to contain the items.
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