Monday, February 11, 2008

Another Major Taliban Leader Dispatched: UPDATE: Captured Not Dead?

This time it's Mansoor Dadullah, brother of Mullah Dadullah. There's no doubt that they got the guy considering that it was a Pakistani operation and he died of his injuries as he was being flown to a hospital for treatment after attempting to fight off the Pakistani forces:
Pakistani security forces killed a top figure in the Taliban militia fighting U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan and captured four other militants Monday, a military official said.

Mansoor Dadullah, brother of slain Taliban military commander Mullah Dadullah, was among five militants caught after a shootout near a seminary in southwestern Baluchistan province around 10 a.m., a local intelligence official told The Associated Press.

A senior military official said Dadullah died of his wounds while being flown to a hospital with the other four injured men.

Both officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to journalists. Pakistani army and government spokesmen could not immediately be reached for comment.
It's open to debate whether Mansoor was still a bigwig within the Taliban/al Qaeda operations, but his death surely sends still more signals to the Taliban and al Qaeda that the West is still coming after them in a big way.

Bill Roggio has the latest on the situation, which is confused at best:
Mansoor was reported to have been wounded during a firefight as he attempted to enter Baluchistan province in Pakistan from Kandahar province, Afghanistan, according to Pakistan's Inter Service Public Relations. Dadullah and his party refused to stop when challenge and a firefight ensued. "Security personnel returned fire. As a result all of them sustained injuries and all of them were captured," Major General Athar Abbas, the military spokesman said. "Dadullah was arrested alive but he is critically wounded."

But unnamed intelligence sources told The Associated Press that Mansoor and his party were captured after a joint police, Army, and anti-terrorism commandos of the Special Services Groups surrounded a religious seminary in the Zhob district of Baluchistan. Mansoor was captured along with associates Haji Lala, Khudai Dad, Khalid Dad, and Abdur Razzak, according to the intelligence source.
UPDATE: Fixed factual error above attributing capture to NATO/Pakistani forces.

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