Story by Sgt. Kyle Wagoner
HELMAND PROVINCE, Afghanistan – Afghan National Security Forces are optimistic the holy month of Ramadan will be peaceful and safe for the people of Helmand province.
Afghan National Security Forces throughout the province remain vigilant and determined to bring about peace and prosperity to its residents this Ramadan, despite insurgents’ spontaneous attacks on Afghan Local Police checkpoints in the Mirmandab and Deh Adam Khan areas of Nahr-e Saraj District this month. The recent engagements resulted in two enemies killed and multiple wounded.
Afghan Local Police complement counterinsurgency efforts by assisting and supporting rural areas with limited Afghan National Security Force presence, enabling conditions for improved security, governance and development.
“Afghanistan’s security forces are providing good security for the people of Afghanistan this Ramadan,” said Afghan National Army commando Lt. Col. Zaibullah, the 7th Special Operations Kandak (SOK) commander. “Our forces continue to serve the people every day. Twenty-four hours a day we are trying to improve security.”
The 7th SOK commandos and ALP recently played a vital role in positioning forces north of a base in Nahr-e Saraj in response to coalition forces transferring the base to ANSF control, July 6.
The commandos repelled several insurgent attacks as the enemy attempted to mount an assault on the joint forces while they repositioned troops from Zombalay. The Taliban fighters retreated from the area, unable to break through the commandos defensive positions.
“Handing over the security responsibilities from the coalition forces to Afghan force is a tremendous step forward for the province. We are happy for it,” said Afghan National Army Col. Abdul Azim Safi, the 215th Corps Logistical commander. “This is our country and we will continue to do our job and take care of it. I want our people to have their Ramadan in peace and to live in a peaceful region.”
Afghan security forces assumed complete control of all security responsibilities throughout the
province in last month as coalition forces decreased their involvement in operations to assume a supervisory and supportive role.
“We work together closely with the Afghan Local Police and other security forces throughout the
district to maintain security. Ramadan is very important for the people of Afghanistan for all Muslims,” said Zeibullah. “During the month of Ramadan, we continue our mission and support our communities. During the holy month, we should make peace and the enemy should stop their attacks.”
Assuming full security responsibility demonstrates that progress in Afghanistan is real and tangible. Though challenges remain, the ANSF continue to grow in capability, confidence and capacity every day.