In a big breakthrough for Pakistan, TTP Commander Sheikh Khalid Haqqani killed in Afghanistan
PESHAWAR: A key commander of the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) has been killed in exchange of fire with Afghan security forces, the militant group confirmed on Saturday.
In a statement published by the SITE monitoring group Friday, the TTP said Sheikh Khalid Haqqani, who served on the group’s consultative council and had been a deputy leader, had been killed January 31.
"Haqqani [was killed] while fighting with slaves of the United States", the TTP said.
Haqqani’s close confidant Qari Saifullah Peshawari was also killed in the clash that took place inside Afghanistan during a "mission", a senior Taliban leader told AFP.
Afghan security forces declined to comment, and it was not immediately clear what type of mission Haqqani may have been on.
Haqqani was not thought to be related to the Haqqani network, which is also affiliated to the Afghan Taliban.
"Haqqani, also a writer of several books on different topics, was known for giving a befitting reply to so-called torch-bearers of democracy," the TTP said in its statement.
The "TTP resolves to carry forward the mission of Khalid Haqqani ... we have been taking revenge for [killing] of our comrades in the past and we will avenge those [killings]," the group added.
Pakistan has been battling a homegrown militants insurgency for over a decade, with thousands of civilians and security personnel embracing martyrdom in extremist attacks, especially after the TTP began their campaign of violence in 2007.
Analysts have credited the fall to military offensives against the Taliban in the tribal areas of North Waziristan and Khyber where they were headquartered, as well as operations in the country’s largest city of Karachi. -APP/AFP