Afghan authorities scrambled Sunday to confirm the fate of Taliban leader Mullah Akhtar Mansour after US officials said he was likely killed in drone strikes — a potential blow to the resurgent militant movement.
The Taliban have so far not commented on the unprecedented American bombardment on Saturday, authorised by President Barack Obama, in Pakistan’s remote south-western province of Baluchistan.
The apparent elimination of Mansour, who swiftly consolidated power following a bitter Taliban leadership struggle over the past year, could spark new succession battles within the fractious movement.
“Mansour was the target and was likely killed” in the remote town of Ahmad Wal by multiple unmanned aircraft operated by US special operations forces, an American official said Saturday.
Afghan President Ashraf Ghani’s office on Sunday confirmed the strike, adding that they were investigating whether Mansour had in fact been killed. Read More