KABUL (AFP/Reuters) - A Western airstrike and ground fighting killed around 30 rebels, including Arabs and Uzbeks, in an Afghan offensive designed to secure an eastern trouble spot for key elections, officials said Sunday. The overnight operation took place on turf of the powerful group controlled by Jalaluddin Haqqani, a hero of the 1980s resistance to Soviet occupation turned Taliban ally, and his son Siraj, an Al-Qaeda cohort. The operation was mounted in Sepra, said the Afghan Defence Ministry, which lies on the border with Pakistan, where Al-Qaeda and the Taliban carved out safe havens after the 2001 US-led invasion of Afghanistan. More than 30 have been killed, Defence Ministry spokesman Gen Mohammad Zahir Azimi told AFP after the operation. US military spokeswoman Captain Jennifer Bocanegra said an airstrike and ground clashes killed approximately 25 militants when Afghan and US troops assaulted a Haqqani training camp to stop a commanders plans for a pre-election attack using foreign fighters. The Afghan Defence Ministry said 10 foreign nationals were killed. Meanwhile, US Marines and Afghan officials hoisted the Afghan flag over a formerly Taliban-held Nawzad district of Helmand province on Sunday, signalling success in their latest advance days before a presidential election. Last week, 400 Marines, with 100 Afghan troops, launched operation Eastern Resolve II in the district, one of about 10 districts of Afghanistan considered to be under Taliban rule. We have succeeded in regaining the district after years of Taliban control, provincial governor Gulab Mangal said at a flag-raising ceremony in Nawzad, introducing a new district chief for the area. We will make sure that our Afghan troops, with international forces, hold the ground and provide security.