Pakistan Taliban says deputy chief killed in United States drone strike

Pakistan Taliban says deputy chief killed in United States drone strike

Pakistan Taliban says deputy chief killed in United States drone strike

Khalid Mehsud was the deputy leader of the banned Tehrik-e Taliban Pakistan, or TPP, which is the main faction of the Pakistani Taliban.

Pakistani Taliban confirmed on Monday that its senior commander was killed in a United States drone strike in the country's North Waziristan tribal region last week and said they had appointed a new deputy to take his place.

The spokesman said Taliban chief Mullah Fazlullah immediately replaced Mehsud with another commander, Mufti Noor Wali.

But there were conflicting accounts of the drone attack from Pakistani intelligence officials and militant sources.

He studied in a seminary in Faisalabad city in the heartland province of Punjab and recently wrote a book eulogizing the founder of the Pakistani Taliban, Baitullah Mehsud, who was killed in a 2009 drone attack.

Four insurgents including a foreign national have been killed as government forces stormed a base of Taliban group in Jurm district of the northern Badakhshan province on Tuesday, an army spokesman in the region said. The group is responsible for dozens of suicide bombings and other terrorist attacks.

Islamabad opposes the drone strikes, saying they violate its sovereignty.

On Jan 4, the Trump administration suspended its military assistance to Pakistan over the alleged existence of terrorist safe havens on its soil and over its alleged links to the militants fighting in Afghanistan. According to a January 12, 2018 report, Bajwa said he received a phone call from the head of U.S. Central Command, Gen. Joseph Vogel, offering assurances that the United States would not unilaterally hit targets inside Pakistan. Islamabad denies charges that it harbors militants.

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