SBS In Kunduz Combat
British Special Forces have been involved in heavy fighting in Afghanistan, it has been reported. The Daily Mail reports that the Special Boat Service (SBS) have been assisted Afghani forces fighting in the city of Kunduz.
It was reported that the SBS were inserted into Kunduz via helicopter on Wednesday of last week. Once on the ground, they joined with Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF) in order to coordinate efforts to retake the city from the Taliban. The SBS operation including attacks against targets in the city and at a nearby airbase. As part of the fighting, which is ongoing, SBS Joint Terminal Attack Controllers (JTAC) have been calling in air strikes from US warplanes.
Kunduz is one of Afghanistan's largest cities. Situated in the North East of the country, it is home to around 300,000 residents. Following a series of attacks, the Taliban eventually seized the city in late September. Kunduz is the first major city to fall back into Taliban hands since they were ousted from power in 2001.
The operation at Kunduz is the biggest involving British forces since the official end of Operation Herrick in late 2014. Despite the withdrawal of regular British forces from Afghanistan, a contingent of United Kingdom Special Forces (UKSF) has remained active in the country. Recent news stories have indicated that they have been carrying out regular combat operations.
The UKSF elements are part of a US-led 6500 combined joint special operations task force that includes troops from the United States, the United Kingdom. Germany, Holland and Norway. A number of these special operations forces (SOF) have been rapidly drafted in to assist the Afghani forces at Kunduz, who were described as being 'in total disarray'. It was during fighting in Kunduz that a US air strike hit a hospital and killed at least 19 people.
More info / further reading:
- 1. UK special forces kill 200 Taliban insurgents during close quarters battle in Northern Afghanistan
- 2. UKSF Back In Afghanistan Combat
(Elite UK Forces report)