ISAF detains al Qaeda facilitator in Afghan north

Coalition and Afghan special operations teams captured an al Qaeda facilitator during a raid today in the northern province of Takhar.

“The facilitator served as a financier and liaison between al Qaeda leaders,” the International Security Assistance Force stated in a brief press release noting his capture. He was detained in the district of Taloqan, a known haven for the al Qaeda-linked Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU).

ISAF’s Joint Command (IJC) Media Operations Desk would not provide the name or nationality of the al Qaeda facilitator who was detained. “At this time the nationality of the facilitator is not releasable,” the IJC Media Operations Desk told The Long War Journal.

The northern province of Takhar has become a base of operations for the IMU and al Qaeda over the past several years. Coalition and Afghan special operations teams have conducted 21 raids against the IMU and al Qaeda in Takhar since the beginning of September 2009, according to ISAF press releases compiled by The Long War Journal.

The presence of al Qaeda and IMU operatives has been detected in the districts of Taloqan, Rustaq, Khwajah Ghar, Khwajah Bahawuddin, Ishkamish, Darquad, and Bangi, or seven of Takhar’s 17 districts, according to ISAF’s press releases. Six of the 21 raids directly targeted al Qaeda leaders or associates.

Al Qaeda and allied terror groups, including the Lashkar-e-Taiba, the Movement of the Taliban in Pakistan, the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, and the Islamic Jihad Union, maintain an extensive reach in Afghanistan. This is documented in the body of press releases issued in recent years by the International Security Assistance Force. Looking at press releases dating back to March 2007, The Long War Journal has been able to detect the presence of al Qaeda and affiliated groups such as the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan in 114 different districts in 25 of Afghanistan’s 34 provinces.

Bill Roggio is a Senior Fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and the Editor of FDD's Long War Journal.

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1 Comment

  • mike merlo says:

    To bad the holding a joint military exercise in Tajikistan by the SCO wasn’t carried out in conjunction with ISAF & Afghan forces. Better yet carry it out in Afghanistan.

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