Global News

Pentagon: IS in Afghanistan leader killed in April raid

Pentagon: IS in Afghanistan leader killed in April raid

Afghanistan's air force has pounded Islamic State targets in an eastern province where an Afghan and US military raid last month killed the militant group's top commander, the government said on Monday.

"Afghan officials said at least 34 militants had been killed by Afghan airstrikes since Sunday but gave no figures on Afghan casualties." reports the Washington Post (WaPo).

"The station was broadcasting illegally across Nangarhar, spreading the group's extremist messages and issuing threats to the people and governmental staffs", according to a ministry statement.

The statement came after USA and Afghan officials announced on May 7 that a joint military operation last month killed Abdul Hasib, the IS chief in Nangarhar.

Hasib was appointed previous year following the death of his predecessor, Hafiz Saeed Khan, in a USA drone strike in the same Afghan province.

"Sheikh Abdul Hasib, the Emir of Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant - Khorasan Province (ISIS-K) in Afghanistan, was killed in a combined Afghan/U.S. raid", the U.S. military said.

Rain, possible tornadoes, high winds expected during Columbia's afternoon drive time
Conditions are developing which will promote heavy rain producing thunderstorms tonight and Friday morning over the region. It's for this reason we are seeing flash flood watches, flood warnings and rising rivers across the state.

Afghan and USA special forces launched a counteroffensive against ISIS-K in early March, backed up by drone strikes, killing hundreds of its fighters and clearing numerous villages.

A member of Afghanistan's Special Forces unit jumps from a wall during patrol in Pandola village near the site of a USA bombing in the Achin district of Nangarhar, Afghanistan April 14, 2017.

A USA military spokesman in Kabul, Navy Capt. William Salvin, estimated that the ISIS-K force has now been reduced from more than 2,500 fighters at its peak in 2015 to less than 600, mostly confined to several adjacent districts in Nangahar.

But their profile grew as they claimed responsibility for a series of bloody attacks, notably in Kabul, including the audacious hospital assault in March. At least 94 fighters, including four commanders, were killed. He said the militants had "waged a barbaric campaign of death, torture and violence against the Afghan people, especially those in southern Nangarhar".

U.S officials said Logari, who was believed to have been the leader of Daesh in Afghanistan, was among several Daesh leaders who died in an April 27 raid. On April 13, it dropped the non-nuclear "mother of all bombs" in Nangarhar, saying it was targeting a system to tunnels used by Islamic State fighters.

In addition to killing Hasib, the United States military said United States and Afghan forces had killed or captured hundreds of IS militants in an offensive this year. "Any ISIS member that comes to Afghanistan will meet the same fate".

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