LASHKAR GAH, Afghanistan, Feb. 20 (Xinhua) -- A key Taliban commander was killed by joint forces in the massive NATO-Afghan operation to take the control of Taliban bastion in southern Afghanistan, spokesman for provincial administration Daud Ahmadi said Saturday.
"The joint forces during cleanup mission in Marja district (of Afghanistan's southern Helmand province) on Friday killed commander Mullah Amanullah," Ahmadi told Xinhua.
However, he failed to give the exact number of Taliban fighters who might have been killed or wounded along with commander Amanullah.
Days ago, the governor of Helmand province Gulab Mangal confirmed the dead of over 40 militants during the operation.
So far 11 NATO-led peacekeeping forces and an Afghan soldier have been killed in roadside bombs and gunshots related to the Operation "Moshtarak" or Together in Marja, which was launched last Saturday, according to media reports.
Taliban militants, who staged a bloody comeback four years ago, have yet to make comments over claim on Amanullah's elimination.
The operation Moshtarak 13 with the involvement of nearly 15, 000 Afghan and NATO troops as well as U.S. Marines covering Marja and neighboring Nad Ali districts with objective to restore government control and lasting peace in the troubled region.
Military operation continues, reconstruction starts in southern Afghanistan
|The Operation Mashtarak, which means together in local language, which was launched to clear Marjah district in southern Helmand province of Taliban militants, entered its seventh day Friday while reconstruction have started. (Xinhua/AFP Photo)
KABUL, Feb. 19 (Xinhua) -- The Operation Mashtarak, which means together in local language, which was launched to clear Marjah district in southern Helmand province of Taliban militants, entered its seventh day Friday while reconstruction have started.
The 15,000-strong Afghan-NATO joint forces have been meeting Tabiban resistance in Marjah, as improvised explosive devices (IED) remain the main threat to the combined force and intense small- arms engagements occur.Full story
Troops discover weapon cache in Taliban hotbed in Afghanistan
KABUL, Feb. 18 (Xinhua) -- The NATO-led forces discovered a huge weapon cache in Taliban's hotbed Helmand province in southern Afghanistan, a press release of the alliance said Thursday.
"An Afghan-international security patrol found a large weapons cache in the Now Zad district of Helmand last night," the press release said. Full story
Marja offensive small step in larger Afghan strategy
WASHINGTON, Feb. 17 (Xinhua) -- If the U.S. and Afghan forces are successful, the fight in the southern town of Marja will mark a step toward tilting the power balance away from the Taliban, experts said.
But before the war-torn country can rid itself of the insurgency that U.S. and Afghan forces have fought for nearly a decade, a number of challenges remain, most of them non-military, experts said. Full story