29 Apr. 2008

PR# 2008-167

Update: Marines launch operations
in southern Helmand

KABUL, Afghanistan – Marines with the 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit (24 MEU) and the British forces of Task Force Helmand launched an operation in southern Helmand province Monday.

Below is an update to the ongoing operation:

The Marines launched operations in Garmsir district, southern Helmand province Monday night. 

Marines are securing routes through the district centre.

In the first hours of the operation, the Marines’ presence was uncontested.  Late this morning, Marines encountered light resistance in the form of small arms fire and rocket-propelled grenades from buildings along routes the Marines are securing.

Marines also found a weapons cache of rocket-propelled grenades and improvised explosive device-making material in a building.

Afghan citizens of Garmsir also brought a young boy with an abdominal wound from insurgent fire to one of the Marines’ position. The child has been evacuated to a medical site for treatment. 

Marines are here to secure the district centre to ensure that it is under the governance of the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan.

The 2,400-strong Marine unit is conducting operations as part of NATO’s ISAF. The MEU is a Theater Task Force, a position which allows the commander of ISAF to rapidly deploy the MEU wherever it’s needed to conduct full-spectrum operations from humanitarian assistance missions to combat operations.

Contact Information ISAF Public Affairs Office
Tel: +93 (0)799 51 1155 - Mobile: 0093 (0) 799 55 8291 pressoffice@hq.isaf.nato.int - www.nato.int/isaf/