Afghan, US Special Forces Free 60 From Taliban Prison in Overnight Helicopter Assault

PHOTO: In this photograph taken on August 13, 2015, US army soldiers walk as a NATO helicopter flies overhead at coalition force Forward Operating Base (FOB) Connelly in the Khogyani district in the eastern province of Nangarhar.AFP/Getty Images
In this photograph taken on August 13, 2015, US army soldiers walk as a NATO helicopter flies overhead at coalition force Forward Operating Base (FOB) Connelly in the Khogyani district in the eastern province of Nangarhar.

Afghan and U.S. special forces freed 60 Afghan security personnel from a Taliban prison overnight in a joint mission.

The Afghan Special Security Forces’ ground element, along with the Afghan Special Mission Wing, conducted a helicopter assault mission in Helmand Province in southern Afghanistan Thursday night, according to a news release by U.S. Special Operations Forces in Afghanistan.

No U.S. military personnel were on the ground, according to Col. Pat Ryder, spokesman for U.S. Central Command.

The assault was considered a joint mission because U.S. aircraft provided “intelligence support and surveillance” from above, he added.

The 60 freed prisoners included Afghan police, Afghan National Army and Afghan Border Police members.

All were taken to the Ministry of Defense authorities for medical care.

The United States had no information on their initial capture by the Taliban.

There are about 9,800 U.S. troops in Afghanistan to advise and assist Afghan forces. That number includes U.S. Special Operations Forces that work with Afghan special operations troops on joint missions.