NATO has said that members of the Taleban launched an attack on the US-run Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan earlier today. Varying media reports say that between five to seven foreign service members were killed, and at least ten rebels.
NATO said the rebels started their assault before dawn using small arms, rockets, and grenades.
A spokeswoman for the base, Major Virginia McCabe, said the attackers did not gain access to Bagram, but that one building received minor damage, adding that gunfire had become more sporadic by midday. Read More…
A car bomb attack which targeted a NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization) convoy in Kabul, the capital of Afghanistan has killed or wounded dozens of people. The death toll was not confirmed, and estimates range from ten to twenty deaths. 47 people were injured in the attack.
The incident occurred at the Darulaman crossroads, near a US-Afghan military base and the parliament. Six NATO troops died in the attack alongside several civilians. The NATO said they had sealed off the region. The bomber had been driving a car filled with explosives, which they detonated at around 0815 local time [0415 GMT].
Iain Baxter, a spokesman for Isaf (International Security Assistance Force), stated: “An Isaf convoy was hit. At the moment we’re trying to confirm the number of Isaf casualties.” He could not confirm the number of Isaf personnel killed in the attack. Read More…
According to Pakistani intelligence, the leader of the Taliban in Pakistan, Hakimullah Mehsud, is still alive, contradicting claims by US and Pakistani officials that he was killed in a January drone attack.
At the time of the attack, officials reported that Mehsud was killed along with ten other rebels, but Pakistani sources now say he was only wounded in the attack. According to unidentified sources, his authority within the Taliban had significantly diminished after the attack, and is now overshadowed by other commanders such as Waliur Rehman.
Four officers from Pakistan’s main spy agency said that they believed Mehsud was alive, citing both surveillance of the Taliban, as well as reports from sources within the Taliban. Read More…
According to officials, almost a hundred people suspected to be insurgents were killed in northwestern Pakistan early on Saturday by air strikes conducted by the military.
The strikes were made in tribal areas in the Orazkai and Khyber regions, located close to the Afghan border.
The reports say that in Orakzai, 54 people alleged to have been rebels were killed during an ongoing conflict at a checkpoint near the town of Baizoti. A further 42, suspected of being insurgents, were killed after military aircraft bombed a location believed to be a gathering place for members of the Lashkar-e-Islam rebel group, according to a local official speaking to the Associated Press. Read More…
The United Nations’ former top official in Afghanistan has accused Pakistan of impeding negotiations between the Taliban and Western nations.
The official, Kai Eide, said that the arrests of high-ranking Taliban officials by Pakistan had led to the disruption of talks between the Taliban and the United Nations in Dubai. According to Eide, the two parties had conducted “talks about talks,” but they had broken down completely after Pakistan’s arrests.
In an interview with the BBC, he said that “the Pakistanis did not play the role that they should have played.” Pakistan’s actions have prompted some speculation that the country was opposed to a peace deal between Western nations and the Taliban, or wanted to take a greater part in the talks. Pakistan, however, has denied the arrests were intended to disrupt talks between the UN and Taliban. Read More…
On Monday, the Pakistan branch of the Taliban captured an entire supply convoy of thirteen trucks, two armoured Humvees and other supplies bound for the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan, without incurring a single fatality.
Approximately 60 masked militants belonging to Tehrik-i-Taliban blocked off part of a roadway in the Khyber Pass. The Taliban forces overran the Pakistani security forces moving the shipment forward to a United States military base, and briefly took the truck drivers prisoner.
Although gunfire was exchanged, there were no casualties on either side. After releasing the drivers, the militants opened several captured cargo containers of wheat, distributing most of it to local residents.
The attack, which took place in the North-West Frontier Province, occurred several miles outside the border town of Jamrud. It was celebrated by the victorious fighters who photographed themselves with the captured equipment.
Pakistan’s federal government, which has recently stepped up efforts to contain the lawless tribal province, dispatched helicopters and 500 troops to try and track the hijacked convoy. One local child was killed, and four civilians wounded, by the gunships. The Taliban fighters were reported to have abandoned an American Jeep and one of the Humvees along the road, which were subsequently taken back into possession by Pakistan troops.
The Pakistani newspaper Dawn published a scathing editorial attacking the army’s incompetence and heavy-handed response to the embarrassing loss, referring to the attack as disturbing “both for its audacity and possible implications.”
On Sunday, nine United States troops have been reported killed in Afghanistan after Taliban militants attacked an outpost in the Kunar Province near the Pakistan border, the attack began at 4:30 local time (UTC+4:30), just before dawn, with insurgents firing from homes and a mosque in Wanat.
“The insurgents went into an adjacent village, drove the villagers out, used their homes and a mosque as a base from which to launch the attack and fire on the outpost,” said Mark Laity a spokesperson for NATO. “Some of the insurgents also then attacked. I think it looks as if they made a brief breach into the base and were repelled,” he said. Read More…