13 insurgents arrested in eastern Afghan operations

2013-01-01 05:15:27 GMT2013-01-01 13:15:27(Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

KABUL, Jan. 1 (Xinhua) -- Up to 13 insurgents have been detained in operations in eastern Afghan provinces, as part of an increased campaign against the militants in the country, said the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) forces on Tuesday.

"Afghan and coalition forces detained 13 insurgents, located one weapons cache and cleared three improvised explosive devices ( IEDs) during operations in eastern Afghanistan throughout the past 24 hours," the ISAF's Regional Command-East (RC-East) said in a statement.

The detained men were captured in Khost province, some 150 km southeast of Afghan capital Kabul, the statement said. "The detained suspects were transferred to a base for questioning."

The IEDs were found and defused in Laghman province 90 km east of Kabul and neighboring Nangarhar province.

The joint forces found the weapons cache in Paktia province 100 km south of Kabul.

"Operations in RC-East are ongoing," the statement said.

Afghan forces and some 100,000 NATO-led coalition troops have intensified cleanup operations against Taliban and other militant groups throughout the country recently.

The Taliban insurgent group, who ruled the country before they were ousted by a U.S.-led invasion in late 2001, renewed armed insurgency, staging ambush and suicide attacks, killing combatants as well as civilians.

The Taliban has yet to make comments.

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