130 Taliban killed by R.Ms

John A Silkstone

Mi General
MI.Net Member
Jul 11, 2004
Taliban lose 130 in three day battle with Marines

Royal Marines have killed 130 Taliban fighters during a major three-day battle in Afghanistan in which a key enemy stronghold was destroyed, the Ministry of Defence has said.

A force of 700 troops from 42 Commando along with Danish and Afghan troops swooped on the Taliban base of Marjah in a helicopter air assault that took three waves to offload the men.

With Marjah a main base for processing opium and training forces, the enemy put up a fierce fight as the commandos swept through a network of mud brick compounds.

They were also supported by Dutch F16 jets, British Apache attack helicopters and American Cobra helicopter gunships.

Only two commandos were injured during Operation Blue Sword compared to an estimated 200 to 300 Taliban wounded. It is believed that the enemy dead included a Mullah regarded as a “high value target” by the military.

The Taliban were said to have been so determined to hold onto the stronghold that reinforcements were called for from the Pakistan border 160 miles away.

“This was a very successful, deliberate joint operation that demonstrated clearly to the enemy that the Task Force continues to operate where and when it chooses,” said Lt Col Al Lister, chief of operations for Helmand Task Force. “Marjah has previously been a safe haven for the enemy; we have shattered that illusion and more will follow. We will continue to erode the capability.

“Marjah has long been a region that the insurgents claimed as their heartland, a place they felt secure and where they could gather, equip and train their forces,” the MoD said in a statement. “It was also where they moved and stored weapons and explosives, and where the links between the insurgents and narcotics trade have been at their strongest.”

The Marines also discovered an arsenal of weapons and ten Improvised Explosive Devices which were disarmed.

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