Pakistani Taliban chief allegedly killed in U.S. drone strike

Pakistani Taliban chief allegedly killed in U.S. drone strike

Earlier, a senior Afghan Defence Ministry official told Reuters on Friday that Pakistani Taliban leader Mullah Fazlullah was killed in a us air strike near the border with Afghanistan on Thursday.

The airstrike was conducted at about 9 a.m. local time on Thursday, Radmanish added.

According to a statement attributed to U.S. Forces-Afghanistan spokesman, Martin O'Donnell, the U.S. carried out a "counterterrorism strike" on June 14 near the border region between Afghanistan and Pakistan targeting "a senior leader of a designated terrorist organization".

Radmanesh, the Afghan Defense Ministry spokesman, said the strike that killed Fazlullah occurred early Thursday shortly before the Afghan Taliban replied to the government's cease-fire by starting a three-day truce of its own to mark Eid al-Fitr, the Muslim holiday that follows the end of the holy fasting month of Ramadan.

The TPP was also deemed responsible for the October 2012 shooting of Malala Yousafzai, who later won the Nobel Prize and became a global symbol of the fight for the education of girls.

In March, the USA offered a $5 million reward for information on Fazlullah.

The Associated Press reported, however, that Sakhi Mashwani, a lawmaker from Konar province, said Fazlullah and five other insurgents were killed when the US drone strike hit a vehicle in which they were riding.

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Prior to Afghanistan's confirmation, an official at the NATO-led Resolute Support mission in Afghanistan announced the successful operation. A member of the Pakistani Taliban told Reuters by telephone on Friday the group was trying to get word from Afghanistan, where most of the Pakistani Taliban fighters are now based.

Fazlullah emerged as an Islamist leader in the Swat Valley, northwest of the Pakistani capital of Islamabad, more than a decade ago.

Fazlullah was known as a hardliner who broadcast fiery sermons and hard-line ideology via an extremist radio station. "Another four Pakistani Taliban were killed in the attack, which was carried out by a drone".

The young girl was only 15 when she was shot in the head on a bus on her way home after taking an exam in school.

General John Nicholson, the commander of the U.S. Forces in Afghanistan and the NATO-led Resolute Support Mission had earlier said that the United States would adhere to the ceasefire with Taliban announced by Afghanistan's President Ashraf Ghani.

In the meantime, military and political affairs analysts said Pakistan may have been involved in the death of Fazlullah, because of his suspected involvement in organizing attacks inside Pakistan.

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