ISAF captures another IMU weapons facilitator in Kunduz

Special operations forces captured the second Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan weapons facilitator in five days. From today’s ISAF press release announcing the capture:

An Afghan and coalition security force arrested a senior Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan IED and weapons facilitator in Kunduz province today. The detained facilitator is suspected of having organized the purchase and storage of rifles, machine guns, ammunition, mortar systems and fertilizer for IEDs used in attacks by IMU insurgents in the province. During the operation, the security force also seized numerous grenades and several assault-style rifles with large quantities of ammunition.

ISAF told The Long War Journal that the IMU facilitator “is an Afghan of Uzbek ethnicity” and that “since he is in the initial stages of detention, his identity is not yet releasable.” The raid took place in the Archi district, ISAF also said.

Special operations forces captured an IMU “facilitator and weapons trafficker” during a raid in Kunduz’s Chahar Darah district on Nov. 6. The IMU has integrated its operations with the Taiban in the Afghan north. For more information on the raid and the IMU, see LWJ report, ISAF captures IMU weapons trafficker in northern Afghanistan.

Kunduz an Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan hotspot

The presence of IMU and al Qaeda cells has been detected in all seven of Kunduz’s districts: Aliabad, Archi, Chahar Darah, Imam Sahib, Khanabad, Kunduz, and Qal’ah-ye Zal, according to an investigation by The Long War Journal.

IMU operatives in particular are very active in Kunduz province and throughout northern Afghanistan, a study by The Long War Journal of ISAF raids targeting the group indicates. Special operations forces have conducted 35 raids against the IMU so far this year; 15 of those raids were in Kunduz province alone. 

Prior to the raids against the IMU this week, special operations forces were last reported to have targeted an IMU member nearly a month ago, on Oct. 10, when a raid resulted in the capture of an IMU “financial facilitator.” Prior to that, “a senior Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan leader and weapons facilitator” was detained on Oct. 2 in Chahar Darah. ISAF does not issue press releases for all of the raids that target the IMU, al Qaeda, or other foreign terror groups operating in Afghanistan.

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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