Mastermind behind attack on French troops killed
12 September, 2012
KABUL: Afghan and coalition forces on Tuesday confirmed the death of two senior Taliban leaders, including the suspected mastermind behind an August 2008 ambush that killed several French soldiers, the alliance said.
Mullah Hazrat and Shakir were killed during an airstrike in Alishang district of eastern Laghman province on Sunday when the joint force identified a group of insurgents and engaged them, the ISAF said in a statement.
Hazrat reportedly planned and directed the August 18, 2008, ambush, 40 miles east of Kabul, which resulted in a two-day battle between an ISAF-Afghan security force and more than 100 Taliban .
In the years since, Hazrat was promoted to serve as the Taliban leader for Alishang district, an ISAF statement said, adding the slain man ordered several attacks against Afghan and coalition forces in recent months, including the use of suicide bombers in Kabul.
The second Taliban leader, Shakir, also known as Attaullah, was one of Mullah Hazrat's associates and believed to be responsible for ambushes throughout Laghman. At the time of his death, Shakir was suspected of attempting to recruit foreign insurgents to rebuild his attack cell. One armed insurgent was killed and several suspects were detained during an operation to arrest a Taliban leader in the Khogyani district of eastern Nangarhar province on Tuesday.
The joint force seized and safely destroyed multiple assault rifles, several grenades and grenade components, and nearly a dozen kilograms of illegal narcotics and homemade explosives.