ISIS displays US equipment captured in Afghanistan battles

Story highlights

  • US forces have been fighting in an ISIS stronghold in Afghanistan for weeks
  • The photos show ammunition, fabric packs and possibly a shoulder-fired rocket launcher

(CNN)Several items of US military equipment displayed by ISIS in photos published over the weekend likely was either found or captured after recent battles in eastern Afghanistan, according to a senior defense official.

US forces, including many special operations forces, have been fighting in Afghanistan's Nangahar Province, a stronghold of ISIS for the last several weeks.
    The photos, distributed by ISIS's media arm, depict ammunition, fabric packs and possibly a shoulder-fired rocket launcher of the type used by US forces.
    While the Pentagon declined to confirm that the items in the photos belong to the US military, the official said, "We think much of the equipment was likely lost during recent operations."
    The official added, "We are still working to determine if all of the equipment in the pictures was lost during recent operations or at some other time in the past."
    It has been a typical practice of the Taliban for many years to scour the battlefield for US military gear and weapons, so it's not known for certain where the items displayed came from. But the official said that some of the equipment shown "is used" by Special Operations Forces.
    The fighting in Nangahar against ISIS has resulted in injuries to US troops.
    Three US soldiers suffered minor wounds when an IED struck their convoy while they were on patrol near Jalalabad. A NATO Resolute Support mission spokesperson told CNN that the soldiers suffered minor injuries.
    Last month, five additional US troops were wounded in combat operations in the area.
    In the same group of recently released photos, ISIS displayed the military identification card of US Army specialist Ryan Jay Larson, claiming they had captured him. US commanders were able to quickly determine Ryan had lost his card but was with his unit at all times.