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Officials Confirm Taliban Leaders’ Death

Compiled from International Security Assistance Force Joint Command News Releases

WASHINGTON, Nov. 24, 2010 – NATO’s International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan today confirmed the deaths of two Taliban leaders killed in recent Afghan and coalition force airstrikes, military officials reported.

Both individuals were killed in Helmand province Nov. 20.

Sabir, who’s responsible for planning and directing attacks on Afghan and coalition troops, led a 40- to 50-person terrorist cell. He also is tied to weapons trafficking operations throughout the province.

Mullah Abdul Aqyoum, the Sangin district Taliban shadow governor, held overall military command for northern Helmand province. He provided guidance and financial support to Taliban leaders in the area. He also approved all major attacks against Afghan and coalition troops there.

In operations yesterday:

-- Afghan and coalition forces in Paktiya province captured an individual suspected of supplying Taliban with bombs and bomb-making material. The suspect is connected to ambushes and assassinations on development projects, troops and Afghan government officials. The suspect was caught in Gardez district and taken into custody without incident..

-- In Khost province, Afghan and coalition forces captured a Haqqani network leader connected to several attacks in the province’s Shamul district. The individual was taken into custody peacefully after Afghan forces surrounded his compound. Several other suspected insurgents were also detained.

-- Several suspected insurgents and a Taliban bomb cell leader were detained by Afghan and coalition forces in Helmand province. The individuals were attending a Taliban funeral in the Garm Ser district when Afghan and coalition forces received a tip of his location. The individuals surrendered without firing a shot.

-- Afghan and coalition forces concluded a four-day operation throughout Kandahar, Uruzgan, Qalat and Helmand provinces that netted more than 1,000 pounds of various explosives, more than 65 various types of mortars, dozens of small-arms weapons and ammunition, bomb-making materials and several rocket-propelled grenades and launchers.

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