Jalaluddin Haqqani, founder of feared Afghan militant network dies

Leader of militant Haqqani network in Afghanistan has died, say Taliban

However, Haqaani would go on to ally his network with the Taliban, the Sunni Islamist political movement in Afghanistan, and foster close ties with other Arabic jihadists such as Osama bin Laden.

It was Haqqani's rigid interpretation of Islam that launched him on the road to insurgency in the early 1970s when he returned to Afghanistan to open a madrassa, or religious school, and organized a movement against Afghanistan's monarch, King Zahir Shah, according to unclassified USA documents that tracked Haqqani's militant career from the early 1970s to his partnership with the Taliban in 1996.

Given Sirajuddin's role, his father's death will operationally mean little for the Haqqani Network. The Afghan Taliban confirmed his death, on Tuesday. Suicide attacks have become a mainstay in tactics employed by the Taliban and its many offshoots.

► The Haqqanis were accused of killing around 150 people in Kabul with atruck bomb in May 2017, though Sirajuddin later denied this in a rare audio message.

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That includes Canadian Joshua Boyle, his American wife Caitlan Coleman, and their three children, who were released a year ago.

- Where are they now?

After the fall of the Taliban regime in the 2001 US-led invasion, he had joined the insurgency.

United States and Afghan officials have said the group, based in Pakistan's North Waziristan region, operated with the support of Pakistani intelligence services.

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Islamabad intensified military operations in North Waziristan in 2014, however, and now insists that there are no militant safe havens left on Pakistani soil. Jalaluddin Haqqani formed the group in the late 1970s and developed it into one of the deadliest insurgent forces in Afghanistan.

The elder Haqqani was paralyzed for the past 10 years, AP reported. There is no confirmation yet of where he was when he died. "This is the reason why the Pakistani military has never abandoned them, even in the face of tremendous pressure from the United States".

Two police officers and at least 11 Taliban militants were killed in fierce clashes after Taliban attacked a security checkpoint in Afghanistan's western province of Badghis Tuesday, a local official said.

Considering that the senior Haqqani had stepped aside some years ago and was not anymore involved in Haqqani Network's day-to-day operations, his death is less likely to have any impact on the group's activities.

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Jalaluddin Haqqani, one-time Central Intelligence Agency asset whose group became a top U.S. target, spent decades working with groups such as al-Qaeda and the Taliban to entrench jihadism in the conflict-racked region.

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