Baitullah Mehsud escorted by his guard as he arrives for a meeting in South Waziristan.—AFP

DERA ISMAIL KHAN Baitullah Mehsud has been killed in a US missile strike, according to an aide to the chief of Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan.

'I confirm that Baitullah Mehsud and his wife died in the American missile attack in South Waziristan,' Taliban commander Kafayat Ullah said by telephone on Friday. He would not give any details.

One Pakistani official said he had seen a classified intelligence report stating Mehsud was dead and buried, but that agents had not seen the body since the area was under Taliban control.

Another senior Pakistani intelligence official said phone and other communications intercepts (he would not be more specific) had led authorities to suspect Mehsud was dead.

An American counterterrorism official indicated the United States did not yet have physical evidence —remains —that would prove who died. But he said there were other ways of determining who was killed in the strike. He declined to describe them.

A local tribesman, who also spoke on condition his name not be used, said Mehsud had been at his father-in-law's house being treated for kidney pain, and had been put on a drip by a doctor, when the missile struck. The tribesman claimed he attended the Taliban chief's funeral.—AP

Opinion

Editorial

ICJ rebuke
Updated 26 May, 2024

ICJ rebuke

The reason for Israel’s criminal behaviour is that it is protected by its powerful Western friends.
Hot spells
26 May, 2024

Hot spells

WITH Pakistan already dealing with a heatwave that has affected 26 districts since May 21, word from the climate...
Defiant stance
26 May, 2024

Defiant stance

AT a time when the country is in talks with the IMF for a medium-term loan crucial to bolstering the fragile ...
More pledges
Updated 25 May, 2024

More pledges

There needs to be continuity in economic policies, while development must be focused on bringing prosperity to the masses.
Pemra overreach
25 May, 2024

Pemra overreach

IT seems, at best, a misguided measure and, at worst, an attempt to abuse regulatory power to silence the media. A...
Enduring threat
25 May, 2024

Enduring threat

THE death this week of journalist Nasrullah Gadani, who succumbed to injuries after being attacked by gunmen, is yet...