NATO Airstrike Kills Militant Leader Linked to Kabul Hotel Attack

Posted June 30th, 2011 at 11:15 am (UTC-5)
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NATO says it has killed a top Haqqani network leader in Afghanistan who is suspected of aiding militants who attacked a Kabul hotel earlier this week.

In a statement Thursday, NATO said it killed Ismail Jan and several Haqqani fighters in an airstrike in Paktiya province near the Pakistani border. The coalition said Jan was the deputy to the senior Haqqani commander in Afghanistan, and led a group of fighters in attacks on Afghan and coalition security forces starting in late 2010.

A five-hour highly coordinated siege of the Inter-Continental Hotel in Kabul by heavily armed militants ended early Wednesday after all nine attackers either blew themselves up or were killed by Afghan and NATO forces. The attack killed 11 people, including Afghan hotel workers, police officers, and one Spanish guest. Eight others were wounded.

NATO blamed the attack on the Haqqani network, which it says worked along with Taliban militants. The Taliban has also claimed responsibility.

NATO said separate roadside bomb attacks killed two of its troops in southern Afghanistan. It did not release any additional details.

Another roadside bomb Thursday killed a man, a woman and four children as they traveled in their car in the Marjah district of southern Helmand province.