Senior commander of Haqqani Network killed in US drone strike in Pakistan

Source:Xinhua Published: 2013-9-6 22:53:22

A senior commander of the Taliban-linked Haqqani Network, Mullah Sangeen Zadran, was killed in a US spy aircraft's strike in Pakistan's North Waziristan tribal region early Friday, security sources said.

Zadran was killed along with his guards when a US drone fired missiles on a house at Ghulam Khan area, close to the Afghan border, they said.

Sources said that Zadran was considered as the second powerful commander of Haqqani Network after its chief Sirajuddin Haqqani. He was also shadow governor of the Taliban for Paktika Province of Afghanistan.

The US State Department had added Zadran to the list of specially designated global terrorists in August 2011.

The coalition and Afghan forces had claimed in 2007 that they have killed Zadran in eastern Afghanistan. However, he had later appeared in a video to deny the claim.

Zadran, blamed for a number of attacks in Afghanistan, had been the target of several US drone strikes.

He once appeared with kidnapped US soldier Bowe Bergdahl in a Taliban video. Bergdahl, 24, was taken hostage by Taliban fighters in June 2009 after he left his military post in Paktika.

The Haqqani Network later handed him over to the Taliban, who wanted to exchange him with Taliban prisoners when the talks were to be held in Qatar in June. However, the talked ended in a deadlock after the closure of the Taliban office.

In a recent video Zadran had invited Kurds and Turks to come to Afghanistan to participate in jihad.

Zadran's death is a serious blow for the Haqqani Network as he is the second senior commander of the group that died in US drone strikes in nearly one year.

Badruddin Haqqani, operational commander of the network, was killed in a US strike in North Waziristan in late August last year.

blog comments powered by Disqus