ISIS Fighters Killed by US Attack
- Author: Leroy Wright Apr 14, 2017,
Apr 14, 2017, 18:17
At least 36 Islamic State (IS) militants were killed after the US forces in Afghanistan struck their position with a large bomb in eastern Nangarhar province, the Afghan Defense Ministry said on Friday morning.
The strike hit a system of tunnels and caves that IS fighters had used to "move around freely, making it easier for them to target U.S. military advisers and Afghan forces" nearby, White House spokesman Sean Spicer said.
Known as the Mother of All Bombs (MOAB), the 21,600-pound GPS-guided munition was dropped on a tunnel and cave network managed by the terrorists in Nagahar province.
He said it was meant to minimise the risk to Afghan and United States forces conducting clearing operations in the Achin area and added: 'This is the right munition to reduce these obstacles and maintain the momentum of our offensive against Isis-K'. "U.S. forces will continue offensive operations until ISIS-K (IS) is destroyed in Afghanistan", it said.
It added to concerns among investors already wary of risks over Syria and North Korea, as well as the outcome of the French presidential election.
"This is a very specialized weapon, we don't have very many of them, you can only use them in a very narrow set of circumstances", said Mark Cancian, a senior adviser with the Center for Strategic and International Studies think tank.
ISIS, notorious for its reign of terror in Syria and Iraq, has been making inroads into Afghanistan in recent years.
The death toll was confirmed by the Afghan government officials. US forces took "all precautions necessary to prevent civilian casualties and collateral damage", he said.
That's according to military officials who say the 22,000 lb.
But some officials close to him condemned the use of Afghanistan as what they called a testing ground for the weapon, and against a militant group that controls only a tiny sliver of territory and is not considered a huge threat.
Those troops are separate to a wider NATO-led effort to train, advise and assist the Afghan army and police force. USA and Afghan forces had been unable to advance because IS had mined the area with explosives.
Testifying before the Senate Armed Services Committee in February, General John Nicholson warned of a stalemate in the country. "However, this was the first time we encountered an extensive obstacle to our progress".
According to latest reports, the non-nuclear bomb has killed at least 36 ISIS militants.
This is the first time a MOAB has been used in the battlefield, according to the U.S. officials. The target set has also been expanded to include targets buried under softer surfaces, like caves or tunnels.
The Taliban "control or contest" about a third of the population of the country, Bergen said, citing senior U.S. military officials.
Congressman Kevin said Trump has sent a strong message to the Islamic State that will be heard in Russia, North Korea, Iran and around the world. "I complained about that a long time ago and they made a change, and now they do fight terrorism".