August 27, 2012 |
KABUL, Afghanistan - NATO has closed more than 200 bases in Afghanistan and transferred nearly 300 others to local forces, a concrete step toward its 2014 target of handing over security responsibility, NATO officers said Sunday. All 202 closed facilities were small, ranging from isolated checkpoints to bases of a dozen to 300 troops, said Lt. Col. David Olson, a NATO forces spokesman. Most of the closures have been along the country's main highways, spread across nearly every province, Olson said.
August 26, 2012 |
KABUL, Afghanistan - A NATO air strike in eastern Afghanistan killed a senior commander of the Pakistani Taliban who had close ties with al-Qaeda, dealing a blow to the militants who operate on both sides of the countries' porous border. Mullah Dadullah was killed Friday in Afghanistan's eastern Kunar province, across the border from the Pakistani tribal area of Bajur, the military alliance said. He was the Pakistani Taliban leader in Bajur, and NATO said Saturday that Dadullah also was responsible for the movement of fighters and weapons across the frontier and attacks against Afghan and coalition forces in Afghanistan.
August 9, 2012 |
KABUL, Afghanistan - A suicide attack hit a NATO patrol in eastern Afghanistan on Wednesday, killing three coalition service members, the international military force said, while Afghan officials added that a civilian was also killed in the bombing. Hours later on the other side of the country, a roadside bomb hit a bus, killing at least three people, a witness said. Many wounded passengers were trapped in the bus by a fierce battle between insurgents and Afghan police that raged most of the day. The Taliban quickly claimed responsibility for the bombing of the NATO patrol in Kunar province, an eastern stronghold of the insurgency that lies along the volatile border with Pakistan where militants have hideouts.
July 23, 2012 |
KABUL, Afghanistan - Five NATO service members have been killed in roadside bombings in Afghanistan during the last two days, while Afghan officials reported Sunday that four civilians died when hundreds of shells and rockets were fired from neighboring Pakistan. The artillery shells hit homes along frontier areas from which insurgents have in the past staged cross-border attacks. The Afghan government has not yet openly blamed the Pakistani military for the artillery barrage, which reportedly hit districts in the eastern provinces of Nuristan and Kunar.
July 20, 2012 |
The bomb that decimated the inner circle of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad Wednesday should also shake up U.S. policy toward Syria. The deaths of Assad's brother-in-law and confidant, Assef Shawkat, along with other top security officials, marks the beginning of the end for a regime that has slaughtered at least 15,000 people. This is a moment that calls for decisive Western action. Yet, before Wednesday's bomb, the international community was fixated on an irrelevance - whether to renew the mandate of a United Nations monitoring mission in Syria that expires Friday.
July 9, 2012 |
KABUL, Afghanistan - A bomb in eastern Afghanistan on Sunday killed seven NATO service members, on a day where a total of 30 people died from roadside bombs and insurgent attacks. According to the Los Angeles Times, six Americans were among the dead. NATO confirmed the deaths late Sunday without disclosing the nationality of those killed, but a U.S. official said the Americans were killed, the Times reported. NATO said the blast was caused by an improvised explosive device but provided no further details.
June 26, 2012 |
ANKARA, Turkey - Turkey said Monday that it would push NATO to consider Syria's downing of a Turkish jet as an attack on the whole military alliance. The announcement came on the eve of a meeting by NATO's governing body to discuss the incident. Despite deep frustration among many NATO countries over the conflict in Syria, where the opposition says President Bashar al-Assad's crackdown on an increasingly armed popular uprising has killed 14,000 people, it's highly unlikely the military alliance will take armed action against the Arab state.
June 11, 2012 |
KABUL, Afghanistan - Stung by furious Afghan criticism of an air strike that killed 18 civilians last week, most of them women and children, the NATO force has agreed to refrain from aerial bombardment of residential buildings, a military spokesman said Sunday. The accord - reached Saturday night at a meeting between President Hamid Karzai and Gen. John Allen, the American who commands Western forces in Afghanistan - reflects a changing dynamic between the Afghan government and the NATO force.
June 3, 2012 |
KABUL, Afghanistan - It was a risky but successful operation: British and other NATO forces stormed a cave tucked in the mountains before dawn Saturday and rescued two foreign female aid workers and their two Afghan colleagues being held hostage by Taliban-linked militants. Helicopters, flying under the cover of darkness, ferried the rescue team to extreme northeastern Afghanistan where they suspected the hostages were being held. After confirming the workers were there, they raided the site, killed several militants, and freed the hostages, ending their nearly two-week ordeal.
June 2, 2012 |
KABUL, Afghanistan - Taliban insurgents detonated a truck bomb, then tried to storm a NATO base Friday in eastern Afghanistan, but coalition forces repelled the attack, killing 14 militants, officials said. No foreign or Afghan troops were killed, according to NATO, but the attack showed the fundamentalist Islamic movement remains a resilient force even as Afghan President Hamid Karzai insists they do not have the means to retake the nation after foreign forces leave. In the last two years, the U.S.-led coalition has sent tens of thousands of troops into Taliban strongholds in the south and has largely succeeded in boosting security there.