Leader of ISIS in Afghanistan killed during U.S air strike on terrorist hideouts
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The leader of ISIS in Afghanistan has been killed in an air strike on the group’s hideouts, authorities say.
Abu Saad Erhabi died alongside 10 other militants during raids in Nangarhar province on Saturday night, the National Directorate of Security in Kabul announced today.
The extremists were wiped out during a joint ground and air operation by Afghan and allied forces.
A huge amount of ISIS weaponry was also destroyed during the raids.
Lieutenant-Colonel Martin O’Donnell, a spokesman for US forces in Afghanistan, confirmed the US carried out a strike in Afghanistan on Saturday against a “senior leader of a designated terrorist organisation”.
Erhabi is the fourth Afghan ISIS leader to die in the last two years.
His predecessor, Abu Sayed, died in an airstrike on the terror group’s’ headquarters in Kunar province last July.
But the group has developed a stronghold in Nangarhar, situated on Afghanistan’s porous eastern border with Pakistan.
The local affiliate of ISIS, sometimes known as Islamic State Khorasan (ISIS-K) after an old name for the region that includes Afghanistan, has been active since 2015.
During that time it has attacked the Taliban along with Afghan and allied forces.
The US estimates there are currently around 2,000 ISIS fighters in the war-ravaged country.
Earlier this month, More than around 150 of the group’s fighters surrendered to Afghan forces in the northwestern province of Jawzjan, where the group is fighting for control of smuggling routes into neighbouring Turkmenistan.