Joint US-Afghan Operation Kills Two Al-Qaida Leaders, Captures A Third

REUTERS/Omar Sobhani

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Two top al-Qaida leaders were killed and a third has been captured after a joint U.S. and Afghan military operation in eastern Paktika province was executed late Wednesday night, as reported by The Associated Press.

Mohammad Rahman Ayaz, the Paktika province governor’s spokesperson, said that the battle happened on the border with Pakistan’s North Waziristan tribal region and raged throughout the night and into the early afternoon hours of Thursday.

Ayaz also went on to identify the two al-Qaida militants as Asad Mehsud and Gul Wali Mehsud, both from the Mehsud tribe of Pakistan’s Southern Waziristan tribal areas. Jamal Mehsud was the arrested affiliate.

Ayaz stated that the operation happened in Paktika’s Barmal district on the border with Pakistan and began shortly before midnight, storming throughout the night and into the day.

The Mehsud tribe has long been affiliated with al-Qaida and the Taliban, with some of the top leaders of the two groups hailing from the region and tribe.