Airstrike Kills Haqqani Leader, Associates

WASHINGTON, Oct. 5, 2011 — A com­bined Afghan and coali­tion secu­ri­ty force killed a senior Haqqani ter­ror­ist net­work leader and two of his asso­ciates with a pre­ci­sion airstrike in the Musa Khel dis­trict of Afghanistan’s Khost province yes­ter­day, mil­i­tary offi­cials report­ed.

Dilawar, who was known by only one name, was a prin­ci­pal sub­or­di­nate to Haji Mali Khan, Afghanistan’s top Haqqani net­work leader, offi­cials said, not­ing that he was killed exact­ly a week after Khan was cap­tured.

Dilawar oper­at­ed along the Afghanistan-Pak­istan bor­der between Khost and Pak­tia provinces, where he active­ly coor­di­nat­ed numer­ous attacks against Afghan forces and facil­i­tat­ed the move­ment of weapons, offi­cials said. He also facil­i­tat­ed the move­ment of for­eign fight­ers and was asso­ci­at­ed with both al-Qai­da and the Islam­ic Move­ment of Uzbek­istan.

Pri­or to Khan’s cap­ture by a com­bined Afghan and coali­tion secu­ri­ty force, he worked close­ly with Dilawar, plan­ning attacks through­out the area, includ­ing an ambush on Afghan forces in Pak­tia last month.

No civil­ians were harmed dur­ing the airstrike that killed Dilawar, offi­cials said.

ISAF Joint Com­mand offi­cials said the Haqqani net­work and its safe havens remain a top pri­or­i­ty for Afghan and coali­tion force. Secu­ri­ty forces have con­duct­ed more than 530 oper­a­tions to dis­rupt Haqqani net­work activ­i­ties in east­ern Afghanistan, offi­cials said, result­ing in the death of 20 net­work lead­ers and the cap­ture of more than 1,400 sus­pect­ed Haqqani insur­gents.

In oth­er oper­a­tions around Afghanistan yes­ter­day:

— A com­bined Afghan and coali­tion secu­ri­ty force killed two armed insur­gents dur­ing an oper­a­tion in search of a Tal­iban leader in Hel­mand province’s Kaja­ki dis­trict. The leader is respon­si­ble for mov­ing explo­sives and nar­cotics through­out the region. The secu­ri­ty force con­fis­cat­ed weapons and detained five addi­tion­al sus­pect­ed insur­gents.

— In Kan­da­har province’s Gho­rak dis­trict, a com­bined force detained sev­er­al sus­pect­ed insur­gents dur­ing a search for a Tal­iban leader who plans and exe­cutes attacks against Afghan forces.

— A com­bined force in Helmand’s Kaja­ki dis­trict detained sev­er­al sus­pect­ed insur­gents while search­ing for a Tal­iban leader who attacks Afghan forces and assists oth­er Tal­iban lead­ers in exe­cut­ing direct-fire and road­side-bomb attacks.

— In War­dak province’s Chak‑e War­dak dis­trict, a com­bined force killed an insur­gent who threat­ened them with an assault rifle dur­ing a search for a Tal­iban leader respon­si­ble for finan­cial and logis­ti­cal sup­port of ene­my fight­ers in the region. Sev­er­al sus­pect­ed insur­gents were detained dur­ing the oper­a­tion.

— A com­bined force cap­tured a Tal­iban facil­i­ta­tor and sev­er­al oth­er sus­pect­ed insur­gents in Nan­garhar province’s Bati Kot dis­trict. The facil­i­ta­tor con­duct­ed attacks tar­get­ing Afghan forces and served as a liai­son between local fight­ers and senior Tal­iban lead­er­ship.

— In Pak­tia province’s Zur­mat dis­trict, a com­bined force detained two sus­pect­ed insur­gents dur­ing a search for a Tal­iban leader who builds and stores road­side bombs and oth­er weapons and man­ages insur­gent fight­ers dur­ing attacks against Afghan forces in the province’s Zur­mat and Gardez dis­tricts. The force seized assault rifles, pis­tols and grenades.

Com­piled from Inter­na­tion­al Secu­ri­ty Assis­tance Force Joint Com­mand News Releas­es