Pakistani Taliban chief Mullah Fazlullah 'killed in drone strike'

Pakistani Taliban chief Mullah Fazlullah 'killed in drone strike'

Afghan officials and militant figures on Friday were investigating reports that the leader of the Pakistani Taliban may have been killed in a U.S. airstrike inside Afghanistan, but his fate remained unclear.

"We targeted (Fazlullah) but we're not ready to call jackpot yet", a USA defence official told AFP.

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani on Friday telephoned Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa and Caretaker Prime Minister Justice (r) Nasirul Mulk and the shared news about killing of Mullah Fazalullah in a drone strike in Afghanistan Province Kunar.

They said they feared four other top commanders may also have been killed.

The TTP in December 2014, carried out the deadliest terrorist attack in Pakistan's history when militants killed 151 people including more than 130 children, during an attack against the Army Public School in Peshawar.

An Afghan Defense Ministry spokesman (Mohammad Radmanish) also confirmed to VOA that a US drone strike killed Fazlullah.

The militant rose to prominence through fiery radio rants, earning him the nickname Mullah Radio.

On Friday, five terrorists were gunned down in cross-border attacks on Pakistan Army posts in North Waziristan.

Fazlullah, who has been designated as a global terrorist by the USA and carried a bounty of Dollars 5 million, had been on the run since his loyalists were routed in a major military operation in Pakistan's Swat district of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa in 2009.

Fazlullah had been a major figure in the TTP even before he became emir in late 2013, and led a Pakistan Taliban militia in the country's Swat Valley prior to his elevation to leadership of the group.

"As previously stated, the ceasefire does not include United States counterterrorism efforts against IS-K, al Qaeda, and other regional and worldwide terrorist groups, or the inherent right of U.S. and global forces to defend ourselves if attacked".

Her return to her hometown earlier this year seemed a particular triumph as it was also to open a school funded by a charity she established to promote girls education globally.

Said Nazir. A retired air marshal, Shahid Latif, called the strike "a significant development" that addressed long-standing Pakistani appeals for help against the insurgents across the border.

Washington and Kabul accuse Pakistan of harboring Afghan Taliban and the allied Haqqani network, which Islamabad denies. The Pakistani Taliban, known locally as Tehrik-e-Taliban, is separate from the Afghan Taliban, although it is now based largely on the Afghan side of the border.

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