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Omar's death yet to be confirmed: ISAF

Omar's death yet to be confirmed: ISAF

May 23, 2011 - 15:29

KABULinfo-icon (PANinfo-icon):  No credible source has so far confirmed Talibaninfo-icon leader Mullahinfo-icon Mohammad Omar's death, the International Security Assistance Force (ISAFinfo-icon) said on Monday.

An Afghan security official said earlier in the day that the one-eyed militant leader was killed in a joint operation by the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISIinfo-icon) and Haqqani Networkinfo-icon in Pakistaninfo-icon.

The NATOinfo-icon-led force was looking into reports that the top fugitive was killed on his way from Quetta to the tribal region of North Waziristan, ISAF spokesman Josef Blotz told a news conference in Kabul.

"We are awaiting more details and information in this regard. At this point in time, it's unclear whether or not he has been killed," he added.

Pakistan's spy service had asked Omar -- carrying a huge US bounty on his head -- through its former chief, Gen. Hameed Gul, to shift to Waziristan, the Afghan intelligence source said.

However, the insurgents rejected reports that their leader had been killed. "He is in Afghanistaninfo-icon safe and sound," rebel spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid told Pajhwok Afghan News over the telephone.

"He is busy waging a jihadinfo-icon against Afghan and foreign forces on Afghan soil," Mujahid said, challenging security officials to substantiate their claim.

Lotfullah Mashal, the National Security Directorate's spokesman, said he could only confirm Omar's shifting from Quetta to Waziristan. However, he gave no further details.

Spiritual leader and founder of the Taliban movement that operates in Afghanistan and Pakistan, Omar was Afghanistan's de facto head of state from 1996 to late 2001.


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