US troops kill ‘militant’, two minor sons
* 15 Taliban militants, including two commanders, killed in Ghazni
* Taliban in retreat from Arghandab district
By Daud Khan
KABUL: A man and his two minor sons were shot dead by the US-led coalition forces in an overnight operation in the eastern province of Nangahar. Elsewhere, 15 suspected Taliban militants, including two commanders, were killed in a raid by NATO aircrafts in the volatile southern region. Also, the coalition said that it killed a top Taliban commander and several of his men on October 28 as they tried to infiltrate from Pakistan, AFP reported.
Local officials and residents said a vendor and his two minor sons were killed as US troops raided his house in Bhati Kot district, some 50 kilometres from the Torkham border. The vendor’s wife and a child were also injured. Scores of villagers from Takya village, where the incident happened, gathered outside the raided house and chanted anti-government and anti-US forces slogans.
A statement from the coalition’s Bagram base said the troops raided a compound in Bhati Kot district and killed one “militant”.
The statement said, “The militant barricaded himself in a room despite repeated requests to surrender.” The troops found two dead children during the search of the room where the “militant” had barricaded himself, it said, adding that an injured woman and a child were also found, who were later sent to a nearby coalition medi cal facility.
“It is regrettable when innocent lives are put at risk by militants,” said coalition spokesman Maj Chris Belcher. “[We offer] our sincerest condolences … to the families of the deceased and wounded,” he added.
Militants, commanders killed: In the southern province of Ghazni, police said 15 militants, including two local commanders, were killed as NATO aircrafts pounded their hideouts in Gilan district late on Wednesday.
Ghazni police chief Ali Shah Ahmadzai told Daily Times via telephone that the airstrike was conducted on a credible tip-off. Two prominent local commanders, Mullah Moeenuddin and Mullah Shafiq, were also among the dead, he said.
Ahmadzai said the bodies of Arab citizens, believed to be Al Qaeda members, were also found on the site of the NATO bombing. The Taliban neither admitted nor rejected the claim. The commander, identified as Abdul Manan, who was crossing the border, was killed in the eastern province of Khost after security forces ambushed him and a dozen of his men as they crossed the border, the force said in a statement. The killing could not immediately be confirmed by Afghan officials.
Taliban in retreat:In Kandahar, Taliban rebels were retreating on Thursday after Afghan and Canadian troops halted their effort to take a district guarding the approaches to the southern city, Canada’s military said, Reuters reported.
Taliban fighters overran the neighbouring centre of Bakwa on Wednesday and more than 400 families fled.
Delaram district chief Mullah Yahya said, ““During the confrontation 14 Taliban insurgents and two Afghan police were killed and the Taliban set the district centre building on fire.” Meanwhile in Kabul, 11 policemen died in clashes with the Taliban, officials said Thursday, AP reported.
Also Thursday, Taliban attacked a police checkpoint in Nad Ali district in southern Helmand province, killing five officers and wounding three others, said provincial police chief Muhammad Hussein Andiwal.