Thursday, June 1, 2023

IS-affiliated Taliban commander killed in Afghanistan (Lead) (20:16)


Kabul, Feb 9 (IANS) A key Taliban commander allegedly affiliated to the Islamic State (IS) terrorist group was killed in the group’s former stronghold, the restive Helmand province Monday, the provincial police chief said.

“Key Taliban commander in the southern region, Mullah Abdul Rauf, was killed as aircraft pounded their position in Azan area of Kajaki district at 9 a.m. today,” Xinhua news agency quoted Nabi Jan Mullahkhil as telling reporters here.

Five other militants were also killed in the attack, including Rauf’s brother-in-law and four insurgents from Pakistan’s lawless tribal areas, Mullahkhil said.

Mullah Rauf’s elimination, according to the official, is a major setback to Taliban militants in Helmand and the adjoining Kandahar, Zabul and Uruzgan provinces.

The official did not provide more details. However, locals said that Mullah Abdul Rauf, alias Mullah Khadim, was killed in a drone attack when his car was targeted in Kajaki district Monday morning.

Citing the national directorate for security, Afghan media also reported that Mullah Khadim, affiliated to the IS, was killed in Kajaki district of Helmand province Monday.

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