Valley and mountains surrounding Musa Qaleh
Musa Qala is a district in the north of Helmand Province, Afghanistan.Its population was around 57,500 in 2012 and are 97% ethnic Pashtun. The district centre is the village of Musa Qala; there are 19 other large villages and 200 smaller settlements, mostly along the Musa Qala River. The area is irrigated by the Helmand and Arghandab Valley Authority.
NATO-led International Security Assistance Force extended its presence to this region in mid-2006. Musa Qala, along with the rest of Helmand, was to be under the responsibility of British forces.
The village of Musa Qala was the scene of fierce fighting between British Pathfinder Platoon troops and Taliban insurgents during the summer of 2006. The British had set up a stronghold in the local governor's office and faced daily waves of determined attacks. The British garrison was later relieved by a Danish infantry team who faced renewed insurgent attacks, culminating in better-trained militant fighters equipped with rockets and mortars. After a month of these attacks, the fighting died down, and the Danish forces handed control of the base back to British forces. On 17 October 2006, after a 35-day lull in violence, the British left the village, handing over control to the local elders' council.
On August 26, 2015, Taliban fighters seized control of district headquarters from Afghan forces.
A unit of several hundred Taliban soldiers occupied Musa Qala on February 2, 2007.Eurasianet reported: "The attack laid waste to an agreement there, brokered last fall by Richards and local tribal elders, under which NATO troops agreed to withdraw from the town in return for a commitment by local Afghan leaders to oppose the Taliban."
British General David J. Richards, an expert at negotiation, was the outgoing NATO commander. Eurasianet reported that the new NATO commander, U.S. General Dan McNeill, opposes the kind of local agreements that Richards favored, and speculated that the aerial bombardment that was reported to have killed Mullah Abdul Ghafour in February 2007 was a sign of McNeill's more aggressive, less conciliatory approach.
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Musa Qala is a town and the district centre of Musa Qala District in Helmand Province, Afghanistan. It is located atand at an altitude of 1,043 m in the valley of Musa Qala River in the central western part of the district. Its population has been reported in the British press to be both 2,000 and 20,000. It is in a desolate area, populated by native Pashtun tribes.
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Dan Kelly McNeill is a retired four-star general in the United States Army. He served as Commander, Coalition Forces, Afghanistan from 2002 to 2003 and as Commanding General, U.S. Army Forces Command (FORSCOM) from 2004 to 2007. He then served as Commander, International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan from February 1, 2007 to June 3, 2008.
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Events from the year 2007 in Afghanistan.
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The Battle of Musa Qala was a British-led military action in Helmand Province, southern Afghanistan, launched by the Afghan National Army and the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) against the Taliban on 7 December 2007. After three days of intense fighting, the Taliban retreated into the mountains on 10 December. Musa Qala was officially reported captured on 12 December, with Afghan Army troops pushing into the town centre.
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The Siege of Musa Qala took place between July 17 and September 12, 2006 in Afghanistan's Helmand province. A small force of International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) troops and Afghan security forces were besieged by Taliban insurgents inside the District centre of Musa Qala.
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See also: 2007 in Afghanistan, other events of 2008, 2009 in Afghanistan and Timeline of the War in Afghanistan (2001-14).
This article summarizes the history of the War in Afghanistan (2001–present).