Pakistani Taliban leader Mullah Dadullah was killed by a Friday airstrike in Afghanistan's eastern Kunar province, NATO and Taliban officials said today, according to BBC News.
The Pakistani Taliban claimed the assault killed Dadullah and his 12 bodyguards, according to Reuters.
Dadullah served as the head of the Taliban in Pakistan's Bajaur tribal area bordering Afghanistan, reported Reuters, having replaced the former commander last year after it surfaced that he was allegedly involved in arranging peace talks with the Afghan government.
NATO issued a statement today saying the commander, who was in his 40s and also known as Jamal, had attacked Afghan and NATO forces, said BBC.
He was killed in a "precision airstrike" on Friday, the force said. The statement did not mention any bodyguards, but said Dadullah was "one of several insurgents killed."
(Reuters) - A CIA drone strike in Pakistan may have killed the operational commander of the Haqqani network, the insurgent group behind some of the most high-profile attacks on Western and Afghan government targets in Afghanistan, Pakistani intelligence officials and militant sources said on Saturday.
TRIPOLI: More than 100 tanks were seized from a militia loyal to Libya's ousted leader Muammar Qaddafi as authorities hunted the perpetrators of a double car bombing, the interior ministry said on Thursday.
How many of them were operational?
A ministry official said an investigation into the attacks on Sunday helped to detect the militia which posed as "revolutionaries" and was housed in barracks in Souk Al-Ahad near Tarhuna, 60 kilometers (35 miles) southeast of Tripoli.
"More than 100 tanks and 26 missile launchers were seized" from the militia, Abdelmonem Al-Hur, spokesman for the interior ministry's High Security Committee, told a news conference.
The car bombs killed two people and wounded four others in Tripoli in the dawn attacks which took place as Muslims prepared to attend prayers on the first day of the Eid Al-Fitr holidays.
The spokesman said that one person was killed and eight others were wounded as security forces arrested the militia's leader, Khaled Ibrahim Krid, in an operation on Wednesday. Thirteen people were also arrested in the operation, while three others escaped.
The interior ministry had on Wednesday reported clashes between Tarhuna members of the security services and suspects allegedly involved in Sunday's blasts. The pro-Qaddafi militia known as Katibat Al-Awfiya (Brigade of the Faithful) was known internally as the "Brigade of Martyr Muammar Qaddafi," who was killed last October, according to Hor.
"We believed the Katibat defended Libya and the revolution, but it turned out to be contrary," he said.
Hor acknowledged that Libya's security forces had been infiltrated by supporters of the former regime and said a committee has been formed to investigate.
A serviceman was killed and another wounded in an attack on a military convoy in Russia's North Caucasus Republic of Dagestan on Friday. A spokesman for the republic's investigation department said, "Unidentified gunmen attacked a military convoy in the Khasavyurt District, one person was killed and one injured."
Armed men in masks have kidnapped a police officer in the troubled region of Ingushetia. The abduction occurred in the town of Malgobek late on Thursday. The 23-year-old was driven away in an "unknown direction," according to a local police spokesman.
OSLO: Norwegian mass killer Anders Behring Breivik was jailed for a maximum term yesterday when judges declared him sane enough to answer for the murder of 77 people last year, drawing a smirk of triumph from the self-styled warrior against Islam.
An unrepentant Breivik, 33, gave the Oslo court a stiff-armed, clench-fisted salute before being handed the steepest possible penalty, 21 years. His release, however, can be put off indefinitely should he still pose a threat to a liberal society left traumatised by his bomb and shooting rampage last July.
Oh, they'll be over it by then. It's 21 years, after all...
Justifying blasting a government building and gunning down dozens of teenagers at a summer camp as a service to a nation threatened by immigration, he had said only acquittal or death would be worthy outcomes. But his biggest concern was being declared insane, a fate he said would be "worse than death."
Let's try both and see...
Judge Wenche Elizabeth Arntzen dismissed a prosecution call for her to label Breivik mad, a ruling that would have seen him confined indefinitely to psychiatric care rather than prison.
The prosecution wanted him put away forever. Reasonable. The problem is Norwegian (and most European) law, which requires that we treat sociopaths, psychopaths and other assorted evil creatures 'humanely'. That's not reasonable...
Some survivors of the slaughter at the Labour party youth camp on Utoeya island, and much of the Norwegian public, had been keen to see Breivik held clearly responsible for his actions -- and to avoid the insanity verdict that would have prompted him to demand lengthy and traumatic appeals hearings.
For many Norwegians, still shocked by their bloodiest day since World War Two, the details were academic, however.
"He is getting what he deserves," said Alexandra Peltre, 18, whom Breivik shot in the thigh on Utoeya. "This is karma striking back at him. I do not care if he is insane or not, as long as he gets the punishment that he deserves."
Except, of course, he isn't getting what he deserves, since he'll be 54 when he's released from prison.
Dressed in a black suit with a tie and still sporting the blond, under-chin beard familiar from the 10 weeks of hearings that ended in June, Breivik smirked when he entered the courtroom and smiled again as the judge read out the verdict.
Driving a type of car favored by the cartel creates IFF* problems. Anyone remember the Italians in Iraq who dropped the bag money to pick up the 'kidnapped' journalist only to drive high speed to the airport and into a checkpoint looking for terrorists, who employed high speed vehicles to deliver car bombs? Bad command, control, coordination and communication.
Yeah ... some essential details are missing from these stories. This can't just have been a random accident. What was lost or taken from the US vehicle? I'm not convinced the the story being fed to reporters is right - and still not convinced that cartels were no involved. A lot of Mex Feds work for them.
I also think that the back window of that SUV was not well armored. It should not have taken so many bullet holes. It almost looks like the armored car company was going cheap on the ballistic glass in the rear window. Not a good idea - if your enemy is trailing you, a lot of oncoming fire can go thru that window. And that is exactly what happened here.
The emir of the Turkistan Islamic Party (TIP) who was appointed by al Qaeda to direct operations in Pakistan's tribal areas is rumored to have been killed in the flurry of drone strikes that took place in North Waziristan this week.
Emeti Yakuf and three of his "commanders" are thought to have been killed in Friday's drone strike on a training camp in the Shawal Valley, Pakistani intelligence told Dawn. Two leaders of the Movement of the Taliban in Pakistan were also reportedly killed in the same strike. Yakuf's death has not been confirmed.
US intelligence officials told The Long War Journal that they are investigating reports of Yakuf's death, and that he is one of numerous senior terrorist leaders being hunted in North Waziristan.
Yesterday, US intelligence officials told The Long War Journal that the remotely piloted Predators and Reapers were targeting an "important jihadi leader" in the region, but his name was not disclosed. Badruddin Haqqani, the deputy leader of the al Qaeda-linked Haqqani Network, is also rumored to have been killed in a drone strike this week, but the report is unconfirmed.
An al Qaeda operations chief
Yakuf, who is better known as Abdul Shakoor Turkistani or Abdul Jabbar, was given command of al Qaeda's forces in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas in the spring of 2010 after Saif al Adel, a top al Qaeda military strategist and now its deputy leader, left the region [see LWJ report, Al Qaeda appoints new leader of forces in Pakistan's tribal areas].
Yakuf took control of the Turkistan Islamic Party after his predecessor, Abdul Haq al Turkistani, was killed in the Feb. 14, 2010 strike on a compound in the village of Zor Babar Aidak near Mir Ali in North Waziristan. The Turkistan Islamic Party is known to operate in the Mir Ali region along with the Islamic Jihad Group, an offshoot of the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan.
[NY Times] NATO ...the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. Originally it was a mutual defense pact directed against an expansionist Soviet Union. In later years it evolved into a mechanism for picking the American pocket while criticizing the cut of the American pants... forces said on Saturday that they had killed a senior Pak Taliban capo in an Arclight airstrike in Afghanistan, highlighting the increasingly complicated nature of the fight against Islamist cut-throats along the border between Afghanistan and Pakistain.
Mullah Dadullah, who led the Pak Taliban in the Bajaur tribal agency, was killed late Friday in a strike on a compound across the border in the Afghan province of Kunar, NATO and Pak intelligence officials said.
The Kunar police chief, Gen. Elwaz Mohammad Naziri, said 12 other myrmidons, including Dadullah's deputy, were also killed.
The death of Mullah Dadullah, a former prayer leader who rose through the Taliban ranks to become a commander, will have an impact on the fighting in Bajaur, where the Pak Army has been battling the Pak Taliban since 2008.
But it may also offer an opportunity for a fresh turn in the relations among NATO, Pak and Afghan forces along the mostly non-existent border, which have been marred by acrid recriminations in recent months.
Pak officials have publicly accused NATO of failing to stop Taliban fighters sheltering in the Afghan provinces of Kunar and Nuristan, from which American forces have largely withdrawn, from carrying out attacks inside Pakistain.
The officials' protests reached a crescendo in June after a Taliban ambush on a Pak border patrol killed 13 troops, 7 of whom had their heads chopped off. Some Pak officials have gone as far as to accuse NATO and Afghan forces of secretly supporting the bad turbans.
The Afghan government has replied by saying that Pakistain's military regularly fires artillery salvos across the border into remote Afghan villages, killing scores of civilians. Tensions between border police on both sides have flared into gunfire exchanges several times in the last month.
NATO officials, meanwhile, note that Pakistain has failed to crack down on much larger Afghan Taliban sanctuaries inside its own territory -- particularly in North Wazoo, further west along the border, where the notorious Haqqani network holds sway.
There, the campaign against the Taliban is being led by Central Intelligence Agency drone strikes, which have attacked targets in North Waziristan on four of the last eight days. Senior American officials in Washington say one of the strikes may have killed Badruddin Haqqani, the operational leader of the Haqqani network.
Now, Mullah Dadullah has become the most senior Pak Taliban capo to be killed by NATO in Afghanistan. In Kabul, the Afghan capital, a NATO official said the killing signaled a desire for greater cross-border cooperation with Pakistain. "This is an example of that," he said.
NATO said Mullah Dadullah was important on the Afghan battlefield, too. In a statement, the military alliance said he "was responsible for the movement of fighters and weapons, as well as attacks on Afghan and coalition forces."
A front man for Pakistain's military was not immediately available for comment. "I can say no more!" But Asad Munir, a retired Pakistain military brigadier and former intelligence chief in Beautiful Downtown Peshawar, said Mullah Dadullah's killing was a "very calculated move that is likely to be appreciated by our army."
"Their complaint has been that American and Afghan forces are not targeting the Pak Taliban. This is a good sign," he said.
Mullah Dadullah, also the name of an Afghan commander of the Taliban who was killed in 2007, was the nom de guerre of Jamal Said, a prayer leader from the village of Damadola, in Bajaur. He rose through the ranks of the Pakistain Taliban and in 2008, he headed its vice and virtue department, which enforces strict moral edicts based on a narrow interpretation of Islamic texts, and later ran its charity.
He became a Taliban capo in Bajaur after the group's leadership fired his predecessor, Maulvi Faqir Muhammad, for engaging in unauthorized peace talks with the Islamabad government.
Mr. Muhammad now leads a rival Taliban faction, which is also based in Afghanistan and has been attacking Pak border posts. His troops have clashed with those of Mullah Dadullah in the past month, a local news hound from Bajaur said by telephone.
ISLAMABAD: US missiles slammed into three compounds close to the Afghan border yesterday, killing 18 suspected militants, Pakistani officials said, just a day after the government summoned an American diplomat to protest drone strikes in the country's northwest tribal region.
The suspected militant hideouts were hit minutes apart. They were located several kilometers from each other in the North Waziristan tribal area, said intelligence officials.
The US has carried out seven drone strikes in the past week in North Waziristan, ignoring Pakistani protests that they violate the country's sovereignty.
The Paks will neither corral the hard boyz themselves nor persuade the mighty Pak air force to shoot down the drones. Of course we're ignoring them...
The suspected militant hideouts that were attacked Friday in the Shawal area of North Waziristan were each hit by two missiles, said the intelligence officials. Militants often use the hideouts when they are crossing into Afghanistan, the officials said. In addition to the 18 suspected militants who were killed, 14 others were wounded, they said.
There has been a string of drone strikes over the past week. On Saturday, five allies of a powerful warlord, Hafiz Gul Bahadur, whose forces often strike US troops in Afghanistan, died when a US drone struck their hideout. On Sunday, American drones fired a flurry of missiles into the Pakistani tribal area bordering Afghanistan, killing 10 suspected militants in two separate strikes. On Tuesday, missiles targeting a vehicle killed five more suspected militants.
BAGHDAD: Attacks in Baghdad and north of the capital killed four people yesterday, after the conclusion of the Eid festival and as Al-Qaeda claimed a series of attacks earlier in the summer.
In the deadliest attack, two explosions struck the neighborhood of Sadr City in north Baghdad at around 12:30 p.m. (0930 GMT) as worshippers were gathering for prayers on the Muslim day of rest. Three people were killed and at least eight were wounded, according to medics at nearby hospitals and an interior ministry official. Among the wounded was Nasser Al-Saadi, an official in the movement loyal to anti-US cleric Moqtada Al-Sadr, the medics said.
So it might have been a targeted hit...
Another person was killed and three others wounded by a roadside bomb targeting the home of a family in the town of Khan Beni Saad, 30 kilometers (18 miles) north of Baghdad, a police colonel and a medic at the main hospital in provincial capital Baquba said.
Officials in the main northern city of Mosul, meanwhile, on Friday morning found four bodies, all of men in their 30s who had been shot in the head and chest. It was unclear why they had been targeted. Both police First Lt. Mohammed Al-Juburi and doctor Mahmud Haddad at Mosul General Hospital said the men appeared to have been killed late on Thursday.
Almost 10,000 people, including politicians, school authorities and local religious leaders, have been named as part of an terrorist insurgency network in a newly launched Thai army handbook. The blacklisted names are listed in two books which are called The Order of Battle.
The first handbook lays out the structure of the terrorist insurgency network, which includes separatists, the older movements in the region and others linked to the insurgency. The second handbook identifies the names of leaders and their forces in each village and district of the three southernmost provinces and in four districts of Songkhla.
The 500-page book lists 9,692 people as being involved in the network. There are outstanding arrest warrants for 866 of these people.
An army source said, "The number of leaders and their people are increasing by the hundreds, totalling more than 10,000 people now. The handbooks will be updated annually."
ALEPPO, Syria: The number of refugees fleeing civil war in Syria has surged to over 200,000, the UN said yesterday, as fighter jets and tanks reportedly unleashed deadly new raids in hotspots across the country.
Officials complained that the escalation of violence in Syria and related clashes in Lebanon are hampering the work of the UN refugee agency as the number of those fleeing the conflict reaches record levels.
The total reflects an increase of about 30,000 in the past week alone to Turkey, Lebanon, Iraq and Jordan, but also takes into account those awaiting registration in Jordan, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) said.
"There has been a dramatic increase in the number of (Syrian) refugees in the region during August, we're now at over 200,000 refugees in the region, that's over and above our planning figure for all 2012 of 185,000 refugees," spokesman Adrian Edwards told Reuters in Geneva.
Turkey continues to see the largest refugee influx, with more than 74,000 registered as of Wednesday, Edwards said.
The refugee numbers swell as activists said fighters jet bombed an apartment building in eastern Syria. The air raid on Mayadin, a city in Deir El-Zour province near the Iraqi border, occurred after fighters gained control of a key checkpoint on a bridge over the Euphrates River there, local activist Abu Omar Al-Deery said. Al-Deery put the death toll at 23.
"There was a real massacre in Mayadin. I believe it is to avenge the takeover of the city by the Free Syrian Army," Al-Deery told The Associated Press through Skype.
Syrians' war to overthrow Assad seems to be drawing ever more fellow Arabs and other Muslims to the battlefield, many driven by a sense of duty to perform jihad. But while some are professional "jihadists", veterans of Iraq or Afghanistan, Chechnya or Libya, who bring combat and bomb-making skills, many of these foreigners have little to offer Syrians, and plenty have ended up floundering beyond their comfort zone.
Talal Mohammad is a long way from Tennessee, and he's well out of his depth. In an olive grove a few miles from the frontlines of Aleppo, he's at a loss to explain to a battle-hardened bunch of Syrian rebels what exactly this well-off, U.S.-trained Saudi dentist is doing there.
"Why have you come?" asked one of his new comrades, as they shared a meal in the twilight of a makeshift training camp. The man quickly adds, "Don't get us wrong. We appreciate your solidarity. But if you'd brought us money and weapons, that would have been much better."
Senior fighters around Aleppo say it is a common story. One who goes by the name Abu Mohammed said, "This week alone, I have welcomed to Syria two doctors, a lawyer, a karate trainer and a social worker from Britain."