Monday, December 31, 2012

Nigeria: One Cop, Four Insurgents Killed in Yobe Clash

Maiduguri — A policeman and four suspected members of the Jama'atu Ahlis Sunnah Lidda'awati Wal Jihad, also known as Boko Haram, were killed in Potiskum on Saturday during a fierce fight between insurgents and security forces, the Joint Task Force ( JTF) said in a statement yesterday.

Residents of Yindiski, a suburb along Gashua road in the outskirt of Potiskum, said the casualty figure may be much higher because they heard multiple gunshots for over four hours at Juma'a, a nearby settlement behind the Maximum Prisons Quarters in the area.

They said the shooting started shortly after a combined military and police troops cordoned a location and restricted movements of people.

A local said trouble started when some gunmen fired at a soldier and a policeman who were manning a checkpoint.

Spokesman of the JTF, Lieutenant Lazarus Eli said a cordon and search operation was carried out at Yandiski where 59 suspects were arrested during the operation for interrogation.

"The JTF had an encounter with suspected terrorists. Four of the suspected terrorists were killed in the encounter. One policeman attached to the JTF lost his life and a soldier sustained injuries," he said.

from allAfrica/Daily Trust
By Hamza Idris, 31 December 2012

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17 Pakistani rebels killed near Afghan border

 ISLAMABAD (PAN): Seventeen Taliban fighters have been killed in two separate incidents of violence in northwest Pakistan, government officials said on Monday.

Eight insurgents were killed Sunday night during a security operation in the Terah valley of lawless tribal region, Khyber, near the Afghanistan border, an official in the political agent office told Pajhwok Afghan News.

The official who spoke on condition of anonymity added the operation came after 21 kidnapped paramilitary soldiers were executed by the rebels on Saturday.

Meanwhile, the BBC quoted local officials in North Waziristan as saying that unidentified gunmen killed nine fighters of Tahreek-i-Taliban Pakistan after their abduction in the North Waziristan.

The bodies were found dumped on a mountainous site, 15 kilometres from Miranshah, the main town in the volatile north.

from Pajhwok
By Qaisar Yosufzai Dec 31, 2012 - 19:34   

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R.I.P. - Pfc. Markie T. Sims

DOD Identifies Army Casualty

            The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier who was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.

            Pfc. Markie T. Sims, 20, of Citra, Fla., died Dec. 29 in Panjwal, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked his unit with an improvised explosive device.  He was assigned to the 38th Engineer Company, 4th Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division, under control of the 7th Infantry Division, Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash.

            For more information, media may contact I Corps Public Affairs, Joint Base Lewis-McChord at 253-208-0576.


Posted on December 31, 2012 at 6:07 AM

A Joint Base Lewis-McChord soldier has been killed in Afghanistan.

According to the Department of Defense, Pfc. Markie T. Sims, 20, of Citra, Florida, died Dec. 29. He was assigned to the 4th Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division, Joint Base Lewis-McChord.

According to unit records, Pfc. Sims entered the Army in November 2011 and upon completing Army Basic Training and Advanced Individual Training, in MOS 12B (Combat Engineer) he was assigned to JBLM.

This was his first deployment to Afghanistan.

His awards and decoration include the National Defense Service Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Ribbon and NATO Medal.
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More French Troops Go to Central African Republic

Dans la nuit du 30 décembre 2012, embarquement dans un Transall C160 de la compagnie de combat du 6e bataillon d'infanterie de marine (6e BIMa) en direction de Bangui Crédit : EMA - Ministère de la Défense 
Bangui — As rebels advance in Central African Republic, France has deployed an additional 180 troops to protect its interests.

The French reinforcements arrived Sunday from nearby Gabon, bringing the total French military force in the capital, Bangui, to nearly 600, Col. Thierry Burkhard told The Associated Press Sunday. The troops are to protect French residents in the capital, which many fear will be attacked by the rebels.

As fears mounted that the rebels would attack Bangui, a city of 600,000, President Francois Bozize imposed a curfew from 7 p.m. until 5 a.m.

Bozize earlier appealed to France for help against the rebels, but French President Francois Hollande's government said it would only protect French interests and would not prop up the Bangui government.

The African Union is attempting to set up negotiations in Gabon between the Bozize government and the rebels.

The rebel forces have seized at least 10 cities across the sparsely populated north of the country. Residents in the capital now fear the

insurgents could attack at any time, despite assurances by rebel leaders that they are willing to engage in dialogue instead of attacking Bangui.

from allAfrica
31 December 2012

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11 NATO tankers gutted in Nangarhar fire

JALALABAD (PAN): Nearly a dozen NATO fuel tankers were destroyed in an overnight fire in the eastern province of Nangarhar, officials said on Monday.

The blaze broke out on Sunday evening in a market place near the customs department on the Jalalabad-Torkham highway, police said.

Seven tankers were completely gutted and another four comprehensively damaged in the fire, police spokesman Hazrat Hussain Mashriqiwal told Pajhwok Afghan News.

It took three hours for firefighters to bring under control the situation, he added.

Mohsin, director of Kabul Bahar Transportation Company, said the fire started after a blast in the market.

"There were 11 tankers, seven of them were full of fuel and the two  were empty," he said, putting the losses at $1 million.

A Taliban spokesman, Zabihullah Mujahid, claimed responsibility for the fire incident. More than 10 US supply tankers were destroyed in the attack, he said.

from Pajhwok
By Mahbob Shah Mahbob Dec 31, 2012 - 17:32

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In Several Joint Clearance Operations, 10 Armed Taliban Killed (31.Dec.2012.)

Publish Date: Dec 31, 2012
In Several Joint Clearance Operations, 10 Armed Taliban Killed

During the past 24 hours, Afghan National Police, Afghan National Army, NDS and Coalition Forces launched nine joint clearance operations in Kunar, Baghlan, Kandahar, Maidan Wardak, Logar and Ghazni provinces.

As a result of these operations, 10 armed Taliban were killed, one wounded and nine others were arrested by Afghan National Security Forces.

Also, during these operations, Afghan National Police discovered and confiscated eight AK-47 rifles, one PK machine gun, one rocket launcher, 10 mortar rounds and six anti-vehicle mines.

In the meantime, two armed Taliban (mine planters) were killed by their own explosives while they were planting an anti-vehicle mine in the main road of Grashk District of Helmand province yesterday.
The 101 Kabul Zone National Police detained three suspects accused of murder in the 8th and 11th Districts of Kabul-City yesterday.
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Dec. 31., 2012. - ISAF Joint Command Operational Update

KABUL, Afghanistan – Afghan and coalition security forces confirmed today the arrest of a top Taliban leader in Andar district during a security operation in Andar district, Ghazni province, Tuesday.

As one of the most senior Taliban leaders in the district, the insurgent executed tactical planning, kidnapping operations, detainee operations and strategic planning to support the Taliban insurgency. He was directly involved in attacks against Afghan and coalition forces and in contact with local Taliban leadership.

During the operation, the security force also detained two suspected insurgents.

In other International Security Assistance Force news throughout Afghanistan:


An Afghan and coalition security force arrested a Taliban leader and detained one suspected insurgent in Nad ‘Ali district, Helmand province, today. The leader commanded a direct action cell operating in the district. He also planned and coordinated multiple improvised explosive device and ambush attacks against Afghan and coalition forces.


A Haqqani leader in Pul-e ‘Alam district, Logar province, was arrested by an Afghan and coalition security force today. The leader coordinated and prepared improvised explosive device attacks against Afghan and coalition forces. He also facilitated the distribution of weapons, IEDs and suicide vests to insurgents throughout the district.

Afghan and coalition forces killed several armed insurgents during a security operation in Ghaziabad district, Kunar province, yesterday. During the operation, the security force observed the armed individuals engaged in hostile activity and engaged them.

During a security operation in search of a Taliban leader in Andar district, Ghazni province, today, two insurgents were arrested by an Afghan and coalition security force. The leader commands a large number of insurgents and manages improvised explosive device attacks against Afghan and coalition forces.

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Dec. 31., 2012. - RC-East operational update

BAGRAM, Afghanistan - Afghan and coalition forces detained five insurgents, located one weapons cache and cleared one improvised explosive device during operations in eastern Afghanistan throughout the past 24 hours, Dec. 30.

Logar province
Afghan National found and safely cleared one IED in Pul-E-Alam district.

Afghan National Army soldiers discovered a weapons cache in Kherwar district. The cache contained small arms ammunition and grenades.

Afghan National Security Forces detained two insurgents during an engagement in Muhammad Aghah district. The detained suspects were transferred to a base for questioning.

Nangarhar province
Afghan Uniformed detained three insurgents during an engagement in Khugyani district. The detained suspects were transferred to a base for questioning.

Operations in RC-East are ongoing.

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Explosions across Iraq kill at least 10, wound 46

(Reuters) - Explosions killed at least 10 people and wounded 46 across Iraq on Monday, police said, underlining sectarian and ethnic divisions that threaten to further destabilise the country a year after U.S. troops left.

Tensions between Shi'ite, Kurdish and Sunni factions in Iraq's power-sharing government have been on the rise this year. Militants continue to strike almost daily, and carry out at least one big attack a month.

The latest violence followed more than a week of protests against Shi'ite Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki by thousands of people from the country's minority Sunni community.

No group claimed responsibility for any of Monday's attacks, which targeted government officials, police patrols and members of both the Sunni and Shi'ite sects.

Seven people from the same Sunni family were killed by a bomb planted near their home in the town of Mussayab, south of Baghdad.

In the Shi'ite majority city of Hilla, also in the south, a parked car bomb went off near the convoy of the governor of Babil province, missing him but killing two other people, police said.

"We heard the sound of a big explosion and the windows of our office shattered. We immediately lay on the ground," said 28-year-old Mohammed Ahmed, who works at a hospital near the site of the explosion.

"After a few minutes I stood up and went to the windows to see what happened. I saw flames and people lying on the ground."

Although violence is far lower than during the sectarian slaughter of 2006-2007, about 2,000 people have been killed in Iraq this year following the withdrawal last December of U.S. troops, who led an invasion in 2003 to overthrow Saddam Hussein.

Monday's violence also included a series of blasts that killed three people in Iraq's disputed territories, over which both the central government and the autonomous Kurdish region claim jurisdiction.

Two of those deaths were in the oil-producing, ethnically mixed city of Kirkuk, where a bomb exploded as a police team tried to defuse it.

Baghdad and Kurdistan are locked in a feud over land and oil rights and recently deployed their respective armies to the swathe of territory along their contested internal boundary, where they are currently facing off against each other.

Efforts to ease the standoff stalled when President Jalal Talabani, a Kurd seen as a steadying influence, suffered a stroke and was flown abroad for medical care earlier this month.

Maliki then detained the bodyguards of his Sunni finance minister, which sparked protests by thousands in the western province of Anbar, a Sunni stronghold on the border with Syria.

Protesters are demanding an end to what they see as the marginalisation of Iraq's Sunni minority, which dominated the country until the U.S.-led invasion. They want Maliki to abolish anti-terrorism laws they say are used to persecute them.

On Sunday, Deputy Prime Minister Saleh al-Mutlaq, himself a Sunni, was forced to flee the epicentre of the protests in Anbar's city of Ramadi when demonstrators pelted him with stones and bottles.

BAGHDAD | Mon Dec 31, 2012 12:02pm GMT
(Reporting by Ali al-Rubaie in Hilla, Mustafa Mahmoud and Omar Mohammed in Kirkuk, Ali Mohammed in Baquba and Aseel Kami in Baghdad; Writing by Isabel Coles; Editing by Pravin Char)

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Nine ‘Pakistani Taliban fighters’ found dead in North Waziristan

MIRANSHAH: Bullet-ridden bodies of nine ‘Pakistani Taliban fighters’ were found on Monday dumped in the northwestern tribal North Waziristan region near the Afghan border, officials said.

The bodies were found on the side of the road in Peer Kaley village in North Waziristan, a stronghold of militant groups, 10 kilometres east of the district’s main town of Miranshah.

“Unidentified people threw away these nine bodies. No one knows who killed them,” a security official based in Miranshah told AFP.

Local residents confirmed that the bodies had been discovered and a second security official in Miranshah said the identity of the dead was yet not known.

But Ehsanullah Ehsan, a spokesman for the banned Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), told AFP that all nine were Taliban fighters and accused government security forces of killing them.

“We are proud of their martyrdom, soon we will take revenge for this killing,” he told AFP from an undisclosed location.

Officials on Sunday said they had found the bodies of 21 Levies soldiers who had been kidnapped by militants near the northwestern city of Peshawar.

Pakistan’s seven northwestern tribal districts are rife with homegrown insurgents and are said to be strongholds of Taliban and al Qaeda operatives.

Security officials said fighter jets on Monday bombed the Tirah valley in Khyber, another tribal district, killing at least eight militants.

Islamabad says more than 35,000 people have been killed as a result of terrorism in the country since the 9/11 attacks on the United States.

from DAWN
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Sunday, December 30, 2012

Taliban bombers arrested in failed insider attack bid

A group of the Taliban militants who were looking to carry out coordinated attacks on Paktika governor compound after seducing an Afghan police officer were trapped and arrested by the same police officer.

The Afghan police was appreciated by high level Afghan security officials.

Taliban militants were assuming that the Afghan police officer Bayar Khan Wayar was the appropriate person to use for an insider attack however the police officer trapped the Taliban militants in their own plan.

Wayar who is a low level Afghan police officer in Paktika province met with a man who told him that he will become a rich person if he meets with insurgents leader.

After receiving a medal from the Afghan interior minister Mojtaba Patang said, “I thought the messenger of the Taliban group was joking but the Taliban leader Mohammad came to the police check post in Sar-e-Hawza district to meet me since he knew I was working there.”

Wayar further added, “The Taliban leader urged me in a rude way to join Taliban group and assist them to carry out an insider attack on Afghan police forces. I requested him to give me sometime until I decide.”

But the 40 year old Wayar informed Afghan police forces rather than assisting the Taliban group and Afghan police forces asked him to continue contacting the group until receiving the full information regarding their plan.

He later received a phone call from a Haqqani Network leader and was proposed with a luxury house in Pakistan if he assists to tke the suicide bombers to Paktika government compound where provincial governor and security chief are based.

Despite it is dificult to independently confirm but security officials are saying that the leader who contacted Wayar was Sirajuddin Haqqani who had a close link with the al Qaeda network.

Wayar said, “The group offered me $50,000, two brand new vehicles and a house in Pakistan.”

But the Afghan police decided to continue with the plan of the militants and allowed three men aged between 18 to 25 who were sent by the Taliban leader Mohammad to work in police check post using the Afghan police uniform.

Paktika provincial governor Mohibullah Samim said, “We were closely monitoring the guys and we told Wayar to assist the suspected militants and never leave them alone.”

Mr. Samim further added, “He (the police officeer) was a true fighter and was not caring for his life. We trusted him and he proved that he was a true Afghan working for his country.”

A month later the Taliban leader Mohammad returned with other men and brought a vehicle laden with explosives with them, they had also brought 60 hand grenades along with 6 weapons and 6 suicide vests.

Wayar said, “I asked them regarding the sixth suicide bomber and he (the Taliban leader) said that he will be the sixth bomber who will detonate the car packed with explosives.”

On 11 December which was the day for the attack, the militants asked Wayar to allow the suicide bombers and vehicle to enter the government compound separately and then he (Wayar) will be allowed to go to Pakistan.

The Afghan police allowed the militants to go ahead with their plan until the last minutes. The hidden Afghan police forces immediately took actions and arrested the six suicide bombers.

Mohammad who later understood that he was trapped called on Afghan police officer Wayar and said, “Now that you have deceived us, why you are not shooting all of us?”

This comes as at least 60 NATO troops and several Afghan security forces have been killed following insider attacks in Afghanistan during the year.

In the latest insider attack, an Afghan police officer allowed to enter a police check post and kill 4 police officers in southern Uruzgan province last week.

By Ghanizada - December 30 2012, 8:01 pm

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Logar residents warn to uprise against Taliban militants

Hundreds of local residents in eastern Logar province of Afghanistan warned to uprise against the Taliban militants in this province.

A number of local tribal elders following a meeting with the provincial governor on Saturday expressed their concerns regarding the growing violence by Taliban militants.

Provincial governor spokesman Din Mohammad Darwish said residents of central districts and remote villages in Logar province have vowed to fight the Taliban militants who are creating troubles for the local residents.

He said, “They (local residents) said we are ready to uprise against the Taliban militants if they did not stop their violence and killings of the innocent civilians. The local government vowed to visit the volatile regions in a bid to prevent the killing of civilians by Taliban fighters.”

This comes as target killings and instability has dramatically increased in eastern Logar province of Afghanistan recently.

A number of reconstruction labors were also among those killed by the Taliban militants and their colleagues met with the provincial governor to share the issue.

A demonstration was also expected to be organized against the civilian killing however due to unknown reasons the protest was not held.

Districts of Logar. This image does not includ...
Districts of Logar. This image does not include Azra district, located to the east of Khoshi and Mohammad Agha. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Meanwhile local officials recently said they will deploy 700 local police officers and public protection forces in various locations of Logar province but it seems the decision was not implemented after local residents on Saturday prepared for a public uprising.

Growing violence by Taliban militants also forced a number of the Afghan families to flee in capital Kabul and also a number of the Chinese workers in Aynak copper mine left the area and went to China.

An Afghan lawmakers Mohammad Akbar Stanekzai earlier also warned that the Taliban group will possibly take control of several districts in this province.

Local security officials in Logar province criticize Pakistan and Iran for growing violence in this province in a bid to put pressure and destabilize capital Kabul.

By Meena Haseeb - December 30 2012, 9:39 am

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Dec. 30., 2012. - ISAF Joint Command Operational Update

KABUL, Afghanistan – An Afghan and coalition security force arrested a Haqqani facilitator and detained one suspected insurgent, during an operation in Pul-e ‘Alam district, Logar province, Dec. 30.

The facilitator supplied weapons and improvised explosive device materials to insurgents operating in Pul-e ‘Alam district. He was involved in numerous rocket, IED and direct fire attacks against Afghan and coalition forces.

During the operation, the combined force also seized a number of Afghan National Army uniforms.

In other International Security Assistance Force news throughout Afghanistan:


An Afghan and coalition security force arrested two local Taliban leaders and detained one suspected insurgent during an operation in Spin Boldak district, Kandahar province, Dec. 29. The leaders provided improvised explosive device material to insurgents and conducted attacks in the district.

A Taliban leader in Now Zad district, Helmand province, was arrested Dec. 26 by an Afghan and coalition security force. The leader coordinated and conducted multiple direct fire and improvised explosive device attacks against Afghan and coalition forces. He also was involved in the kidnapping and execution of Afghan National Army soldiers. During the operation, the security force detained one suspected insurgent.

During an operation Dec. 27, in Panjwa’i district, Kandahar province, an Afghan and coalition security force arrested a Taliban leader who coordinated attacks against Afghan and coalition forces and provided weapons and ammunition to insurgents. At the time of his arrest, he was planning an improvised explosive device attack. The security force also detained one suspected insurgent as a result of the operation.

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Dec. 30., 2012. - RC-East operational update

BAGRAM, Afghanistan - Afghan and coalition forces killed one insurgent, detained one, located one weapons caches and cleared two improvised explosive devices during operations in eastern Afghanistan throughout the past 24 hours, Dec. 29.

Khowst province

Afghan National Army soldiers and coalition forces found and safely cleared one IED in Nadir Shah Kot district.

Afghan National Security Forces and coalition forces detained one insurgent during an engagement in Nadir Shah Kot district. The detained suspect was transferred to a base for questioning.

Laghman province

Afghan National Security Forces found and safely cleared one IED in Mehtar Lam district.

Logar province

Afghan National Army soldiers killed one insurgent during an engagement in Kharwar district.

Parwan province

Afghan National Security Forces and coalition forces discovered a weapons cache in Bagram district. The cache contained multiple rockets and grenades.

Operations in RC-East are ongoing.

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Missing Georgian Soldier in Afghanistan Found Dead

Sergeant Giorgi Kikadze, who served in the Helmand province of Afghanistan and who went missing on December 19, has been found dead, Georgian Defense Minister Irakli Alasania announced at a late-night press conference on Saturday.

He did not provide details about circumstances of Sergeant Kikadze’s death.

“Investigation has to be concluded and after it is over we will provide information about it to the public,” Alasania said.

Two days ago Alasania said the probability that the soldier was alive “is now higher and we have more reasons now to be optimistic that he will return back to his family.”

Speaking at the brief news conference on December 29 Alasania apologized to the family of Sergeant Kikadze for triggering inflated expectations.

This recent incident brings Georgian military death toll in Afghanistan to 19; eight of them died this year.

Georgia has almost doubled its contribution to NATO-led operations in Afghanistan in October to over 1,560 soldiers, becoming the largest non-NATO contributor to the ISAF operation.

Georgia currently has two battalions in the Helmand province of Afghanistan – 12th battalion of the first infantry brigade and 32nd battalion of the third infantry brigade; for the latter it is a second tour of duty in Afghanistan.

Civil Georgia, Tbilisi / 29 Dec.'12 / 22:16

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19 killed, 25 injured in convoy attack in SW Pakistan

Security soldiers cordon off the blast site in southwest Pakistan's Mastung, Dec. 30, 2012.  (Xinhua/Iqbal Hussain)
ISLAMABAD, Dec. 30 (Xinhua) -- At least 19 people were killed and 25 others injured when a bomb hit a convoy of three buses carrying Shia pilgrims in Pakistan's southwest district of Mastung on Sunday morning, said an official.

Tufail Baloch, Deputy Commissioner of Mastung, said that the blast left 19 people dead and 25 others wounded.

Earlier local media reports said that the bus convoy was hit by a roadside bomb while on its way back from Iran to Quetta near Mastung, a district lying some 50 kilometers south of Quetta, capital of Balochistan province.

However, latest reports said that all the pilgrims were from Multan, a city in central Pakistan and they were on the way to Iran via Quetta.

The bus convoy was hit by an explosive-laden car instead of a roadside bomb, a driver of the bus convoy told local media.

The car rammed into one of the three buses, which carried 43 passengers on board, said the driver.

Fire erupted following the blast, he said, adding that one bus was completely destroyed, another was partially damaged and the third bus remained safe.

All the injured have been shifted to a civil hospital in Mastung where some of the seriously wounded have been referred to hospital in Quetta, said rescue workers.

Many suffered serious burn injuries, said hospital sources.

Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari issued a statement and strongly condemned the attack.

No group has claimed responsibility for the attack, which apparently targeted the Shia Muslims.

more photos from XINHUA here
2012-12-30 14:51:18
Editor: Hou Qiang

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Saturday, December 29, 2012

Twenty-one kidnapped Levies killed by Pakistani Taliban

PESHAWAR: Pakistani Taliban executed twenty one of the 23 Levies personnel kidnapped earlier this week, police sources told DawnNews in wee hours of Sunday.

The political administration of Frontier Region (FR) Peshawar have confirmed that 21 Levies officials were shot dead by the militant group in a cricket ground near Peshawar’s Jan-e-Khawarr area.

Meanwhile, one kidnapped official who survived the ordeal has been transferred to Lady Reading Hospital in critical condition while another reached home safely after managing to escape from captivity.

On Thursday, 23 personnel were kidnapped after an attack on two levies posts by militants in the Frontier Region Peshawar, police said. The attackers were wearing security forces’ uniforms and were armed with rocket-propelled grenades and automatic weapons, sources added. Two policemen were also killed in the attacks.

Later, a Taliban spokesman for Dara Adamkhel, Mohammad Afridi, had told Dawn newspaper by phone that his group had carried out the attack.

Afridi had claimed that eight personnel had been killed and 23 had been kidnapped.

The government was seeking local tribal elders’ help to rescue the kidnapped officials and a local Jirga was conducting dialogues with the militant group. However, the talks did not succeed.

from DAWN
by DAWN.COM and Zahir Shah Sherazi | 43 mins ago

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U.S. drone strike kills 3 al-Qaida suspects in central Yemen

SANAA, Dec. 29 (Xinhua) -- A U.S. drone strike killed at least three suspected operatives of the al-Qaida wing in Yemen's central province of al-Bayda on Saturday night, a provincial security official told Xinhua.

"The U.S. unmanned aircraft targeted a group of suspected al- Qaida members onboard a four-wheel vehicle on a remote road between the villages of Khabra and Manasih, killing three of them and injuring the other one," the official told Xinhua by phone on condition of anonymity.

"The dead included Saleh al-Ameri who is believed to be a local leader of the terrorist group in the area," the official said.

Al-Bayda province, about 267 km southeast of the capital Sanaa, was the scene of deadly battles between the army and al-Qaida militants earlier last year.

The fresh airstrike was the fourth of its kind in less than a week against suspected members of the Yemen-based al-Qaida wing, according to Yemeni security officials.

The previous three air raids targeted the militants in Shaher town of the southeastern province of Hadramout, leaving at least seven al-Qaida suspects dead and injuring several others.

The escalation in airstrikes came simultaneously with a newly released video tape earlier this week by al-Qaida militants, in which the terrorist group incited for more attacks against U.S. missions in Yemen.

"We, al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), in order to inspire for jihad and to encourage our Muslim Ummah, announce a reward of 3,000 grams of gold to whoever kills the U.S. ambassador in Sanaa," the militants said in the video message, which was posted on Jihadi websites last Sunday.

"And 5 million Yemeni Riyals to whoever kills any American soldier in Yemen," they said in the 43-minute video tape which was obtained by Xinhua.

The militants also carried out a series of deadly attacks and assassinations against Yemeni security and intelligence personnel in several provinces, including the capital Sanaa.

The United States has beefed up anti-terror cooperation with Sanaa government since Yemeni President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi took office in February, after a year of political upheaval that allowed the militants to capture several cities in Yemen's south.

2012-12-30 02:29:22

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Clash continues on Jalalabad-Torkham road

Jalalabad District is located in the north-wes...
Districts of Nangarhar Province. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
JALALABAD (PAN): Armed insurgents attacked a convoy of trucks carrying logistic supplies for foreign troops in the Batikot district of eastern Nangarhar province, sparking a fierce gun-battle with Afghan security forces, an official said on Saturday.

The clash has stopped traffic on the Torkham-Jalalabad highway since noon at the third farm area near the Pakistani border, the town's administrative chief, Mirza Mohammad Nusrat, told Pajhwok Afghan News.

Witness Nabidullah said a severe clash was ongoing in the area, with both sides suffering casualties. The resident had no figures for  causalities.

from Pajhwok
By Mahbob Shah Mahbob Dec 29, 2012 - 14:53

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US drones kill 2 AQAP fighters in eastern Yemen

map Evan Centanni (

US drones struck for the third time in Yemen in five days, killing two al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula fighters in an attack in eastern Yemen today.
The remotely piloted Predators or the more deadly Reapers fired missiles at a group of al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula fighters as they were traveling on motorcycles in the town of Shehr in Hadramout province, according to Reuters. Two AQAP fighters are thought to have been killed; their identities were not disclosed, however.

Today's strike is the second in Shehr in five days. On Dec. 24, US drones killed five AQAP fighters as they also were traveling on motorcycles in the town. A Yemeni jihadist later identified two of the five fighters killed as Abdullah Bawazir and Nabil al Kaldi. Both men had escaped from a prison in Mukallah in Hadramout in June 2011.

Also on Dec. 24, US drones killed a Jordanian and a Yemeni AQAP fighter in a strike in Rada'a in Baydah province. The Yemeni was identified as Abdullah Hussein al Waeli; he also escaped from a prison two years ago.
Hadramout is the ancestral home of Osama bin Laden's family, and the province has become an AQAP bastion over the past several years.

The US has stepped up drone strikes against AQAP in Hadramout this year. Prior to May, there were zero US drone strikes in the province. Since mid-May, the US launched seven attacks in Hadramout. Seven of the 41 drone strikes in Yemen this year, or 17%, have taken place in the province.

The Yemeni military claimed that Said al Shihri, AQAP's deputy emir and a former Guantanamo Bay detainee, was killed in a drone strike in Hadramout on Sept. 5. But al Shihri later denied the reports of his death.

Read more:
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Dec. 29., 2012. - RC-East operational update

BAGRAM, Afghanistan - Afghan and coalition forces detained three insurgents during operations in eastern Afghanistan throughout the past 24 hours, Dec. 28.

Khowst province
Afghan Border Police and coalition forces detained three insurgents during an engagement in Khowst district. The detained suspects were transferred to a base for questioning.

Operations in RC-East are ongoing.

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Nigeria: Gunmen Kill 25 in Adamawa, Borno

No fewer than 25 people were allegedly killed Friday in separate attacks in Maiha Local Government Area of Adamawa State and Musari area of Borno State by unknown gunmen suspected to be members of the Islamic religious sect, Boko Haram.

The attacks which came as people were almost celebrating a stress free Yuletide led to 20 deaths in Maiha where the terrorists also attacked offices and lodges of the Customs and residents as well as the Divisional Police Headquarters, which they set ablaze.

However, out of the 35 inmates freed by the attackers from the Maiha prison, the police said have re-arrested 11.

The terrorists entered a Musari within the hours of 1 am and 3 am and surreptitiously killed five people in their houses.

Police Public Relations Officer in Yola, DSP, Mohammed Ibrahim confirmed that the attackers burnt down the customs office, District Head office, a car belonging to the Divisional Police Officer and several residential houses in the town.

Mohammed further disclosed that a guest in the local government Presidential Lodge was killed and a police officer also killed at the Divisional Police Station.

The Adamawa State police commissioner, Mr Godfrey Okeke confirmed the incident, but declined to make further comment regarding the attacks in Maiha.

However, Hamman Jelani, an eyewitness told ThisDay that the gunmen came from the mountainous area of Maiha and set the prison inmates free.

He said the came with heavy weapons and fired some gunshots before attacking the Divisional Police Headquarters and the prison. "The attackers also made away with various arms and ammunition."

According to sources, the attackers subsequently proceeded to the Local Government Education Authority complex, which they ransacked and set ablaze.

A resident of the area, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the people of Maiha were shell-shocked in the wee hours of the night as cries were heard from homes.

According to him, many were crying for help without any coming their way "as everyone knew not where the danger was coming from and they were equally apprehensive of the fact that they may walk into the hands of assailants."

He said the attack could have gone on till daybreak if not for the intervention of the men of the Joint Task Force who engaged the militants in a gun battle and drove them back.

Confirming the attack, the spokesperson of the JTF in Borno State, Lt. Col. Sagir Musa said:" Information revealed that some terrorists sneaked into Musari, a village located on the outskirts of Maiduguri and secretly carried out selective killings of five people including a serving Nigerian Police Traffic Warden.

"The Joint Task Force troops responded to the distress call, arrested three suspected assailants and recovered one AK 47 Rifle with ten rounds of 7.62mm ammunition."

from allAfrica/This Day Live
By Daji Sani and Michael Olugbode, 29 December 2012

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Friday, December 28, 2012

Five killed in North Waziristan drone strike: officials

PESHAWAR: At least five people were killed Friday in a suspected US drone strike in North Waziristan tribal region, intelligence officials said.

According to the intelligence sources, the US predator targeted a compound in Gurbaz village of North Waziristan’s Shawal district, close to the border of South Waziristan agency, firing two missiles and killing five suspected militants inside.

Shawal district of North Waziristan region is considered a bastion of Taliban and al Qaeda-linked militants.

North Waziristan, which is close to the Pakistan-Afghanistan border, is one of the seven regions in Pakistan’s Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), governed by tribal laws. An extremist insurgency led by the Pakistani Taliban plagues the region while the area is known to be infested with militants, including the al Qaeda, Taliban and other armed extremist organisations.

Attacks by unmanned US aircraft are deeply unpopular in Pakistan, which says they violate its sovereignty and fan anti-US sentiment, but US officials are said to believe the attacks are too important to give up.

from DAWN
Zahir Shah Sherazi | 17 mins ago

from Radio Pakistan:

Posted Date: 28th December, 2012 Last updated at 17:55 PST

North Waziristan Agency: 4 killed in US drone attack
Four people were killed in a US drone attack in North Waziristan Agency on Friday.

The drone fired six missiles on a house at Shawal area.

from ARY NEWS:

Drone attack kills 5 in North Waziristan
Updated : Friday December 28 , 2012 6:45:30 PM  
from XINHUA:
4 killed in U.S. drone strike in NW Pakistan
2012-12-28 21:10:46  
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Nigeria: Army Kills 5 Gunmen, Discovers Bomb Factory in Kaduna

Operatives of the Nigerian Army yesterday killed five and injured two suspected members of the Jama'atu Ahlis Sunnah Ladda'awatih Wal-Jihad, also known as Boko Haram, following a shootout between the two groups in Kaduna.

And in Abuja, there were feelers that men of the Nigerian Army foiled an attempt to attack Abuja, just as gunmen were reported to have killed six people in Riyom, near Jos, in Plateau State.

LEADERSHIP gathered that the Army operation, which lasted about five hours, took place at Namadi Road in Rigasa district of Igabi Local Government Area (LGA) in Kaduna metropolis when the men of the Nigerian Army stormed a bomb making factory in the area following a tip-off.

The Army operatives, LEADERSHIP further gathered, demolished the bomb factory after hours of gun battle, arrested some suspects and also discovered already made Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs).

An eyewitness, who gave his name as Ibrahim Yusuf, said the well-armed soldiers, numbering about 50, stormed the house around 1:30am and conducted a search around the whole area.

"I saw dead bodies of the occupants of the house, numbering at least five, while their children were taken away by the soldiers; but we don't know where they were taken to. We learnt that the house belongs to one woman who rented the house out at the sum of N120,000 per annum," he said.

Yusuf appealed to traditional rulers and government to set up a committee to oversee the issue of rents, landlords and agents who are in the habit of giving out houses to people of questionable character.

The ward head of Miyyetti Allah, Alhaji Adamu, told journalists that when he heard the gunfire, he came out to ascertain what was going on, only to meet some soldiers outside his house who told him to go back to his house, and not to panic.

Confirming the incidence, the Assistant Director of Army Public Relations, 1 Division, Col. Sani Kukasheka Usman, said the operation took place between 1:30am and 6am. He said the terrorists had opened fire on the soldiers when they arrived at the area.

According to Usman, "On approaching the factory, some suspected terrorists opened fire and also threw already primed IED at the troops."

He further stated that the factory had been demolished and advised property owners to be wary of their tenants, even as he advised people to always volunteer information to the security agencies.

The operatives recovered five Mark 4 rifles, three pump action rifles, 20 rolls of detonating cords, 21 nine volts batteries, two remote switches, one testing meter, five assorted daggers and jackknives and other IED materials.

He equally assured that the actions of the Army and 1 Division in particular were aimed at ensuring peace and securing lives and property of law abiding citizens of the state, urging the public to always report suspicious movement to the concern authorities

In Abuja, there are indications that the Army Garrison headquarters had foiled a plot by some terrorists to carry out a suicide bombing in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

According to an unconfirmed report, two drums loaded with explosives, several cans including those of vegetable oils and palm oil converted to IEDS, about six AK 47 rifles and timing materials were recovered from the hideout of the plotters.

Military sources disclosed that two persons, the landlord of the house where the high calibre explosives were recovered and another man described as the middleman who facilitated the movement of the plotters as well as the IEDS to the house where the attack was to be coordinated, have been arrested by the AHQ Garrison, while a manhunt has been activated for the persons scheduled to carry out the bombings.

It was gathered that both the landlord and the middleman are being detained in a military facility in Abuja while the Police and the SSS have been co-opted into the effort to arrest the two runaway plotters.

Investigations showed that security agencies have beefed up security in and around Abuja, with all exit and entry points receiving special attention.

Meanwhile, patrol teams of the AHQ Garrison, Guards Brigade, SSS and the police were moving round the city while gadgets had been activated to intercept any movement of explosives or IEDS around the FCT.

Some military and public institutions premises are under the watchful eyes of heavily armed, fierce looking soldiers. However, when LEADERSHIP called at the Army Headquarters, it was gathered that the report had not been officially filed at the time of filing this report.

Gunmen Kill 6 in Jos

Unknown gunmen yesterday stormed Bachit village and killed three people, leaving several others with severe injuries and shattering the relative peace in the troubled Riyom Local Government Area (LGA) of Plateau State.

A retired soldier residing in Rim village in the same local government was also killed in his house by some people suspected to be Fulani herdsmen on Christmas Day while celebrating with his family.

LEADERSHIP checks revealed also that the gunmen, who came in large numbers, stormed Bachit village yesterday morning and forced their way into a home where they shot a man and his wife in their sleep.

An eyewitness further disclosed that the marauders, while trying to escape, ambushed a man in the same village and killed him while other unlucky people that crossed their paths were also molested and shot, some of whom are presently receiving treatment at the hospital.

A member of the Plateau State House of Assembly, Hon. Daniel Dem, representing Riyom constituency, confirmed that about six people were killed in Riyom in the last few days.

He further said that the pattern of the killings were not different from the previous ones, adding that those behind the act were the same set of people that had been troubling the area.

He appealed for calm and enjoined the people to be more vigilant. He also counseled them not to be overly reliant on the security men posted to the area, but that they should brace up and not be carried away by the Christmas and New Year festivities.

When contacted, the State Police Public Relations Officer, DSP Abuh Emmanuel, said that he was yet to get the details of the attack and promised to get back to our reporter, but never did at the time of falling this report.

Police arrest 4 over attempt to bomb Enugu Airport

Meanwhile, the Enugu state police command have arrested four persons for allegedly attempting to blow up the Akanu Ibiam International Airport Enugu with explosives, the State Police Public Relations Officer, Mr. Ebere Amaraizu, has said.

The ploy was earlier yesterday by operatives of the Explosive Ordinance Department (EOD) of the Enugu State Police Command.

The suspects, whose identities had been kept secret for security reasons, were apprehended while driving to the airport at about 8.30am yesterday.

The four suspects including the driver of their vehicle with registration number KJA 359 AP were reportedly heading towards the airport when they were stopped in their tracks by EOD operatives on routine duties.

According to the PPRO the suspects were arrested after the vehicle conveying them was stopped, upon a thorough search by the operatives, some items believed to be dangerous fireworks contained in two cartons were discovered in the vehicle.

from allAfrica/Leadership
By Bayo Oladeji, Achor Abimaje, and Midat Joseph, 28 December 2012

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Dec. 28., 2012. - RC-East operational update

BAGRAM, Afghanistan - Afghan and coalition forces killed two insurgents, detained two and cleared three improvised explosive devices during operations in eastern Afghanistan throughout the past 24 hours, Dec. 27.

Ghazni Province
Afghan National Security Forces detained one insurgent during an engagement in Andar District. The detained suspect was transferred to a base for questioning.

Khowst Province
Afghan National Security Forces and coalition forces found and safely cleared one IED in Khowst District.

Afghan National Army soldiers and coalition forces found and safely cleared two IEDs in Bak District.

Nuristan Province
Afghan National Security Forces and coalition forces killed two insurgents and detained one during an engagement in Kamdesh District.
The detained insurgent was transferred to a base for questioning.

Operations in RC-East are ongoing.

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