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When Royal Marines from M Company, 42 Commando, dropped out of the back of a helicopter in the early morning last week, they were ready for a fight.
Operation Zamrod Olai was aimed to further disrupt insurgents' freedom of movement in an area where less than a month ago, the Royal Marines of J and L Company saw numerous firefights and suffered casualties.
M Company was chosen to insert a strike force into Loy Chek to search compounds in an area that had previously seen no International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) or Afghan security presence.
However, what they found when they landed on the ground was very different. The Royal Marines, Royal Engineers and their Afghan partners were met with very little, if any resistance at all.
Interview with Maj. Matthew Parker, officer commanding with M Company, 42 Commando
They searched several compounds for evidence of insurgent presence but turned up no concrete signs of enemy activity. Instead, the Marines and their Afghan National Army (ANA) and Afghan National Police (ANP) colleagues used the unexpected calm to meet with dozens of locals.
Following the success of Op Zamrod Olai, the Royal Marines and their Afghan partners will continue to focus on maintaining the peace and security in the area around Loy Chek.