Entries in Chinook (2)


ISAF Kills Afghan Taliban Leader Linked to Downed US Helicopter

Romeo Gacad/AFP/Getty Images(KABUL, Afghanistan) -- When a U.S. Chinook helicopter was shot down by Taliban insurgents in Wardak, Afghanistan, last month, killing 38 people on board, the target of operations that night escaped.

But on Tuesday, coalition forces finally tracked Qari Tahir down in a dry riverbed in Sayyidabad district and killed him with an air strike, NATO's International Security Assistance Force announced Thursday.

"Tahir was the Taliban’s top leader in Tangi Valley and was the target of a previous combined operation on Aug. 5, 2011, that resulted in the loss of the CH-47 Chinook last month.  He led a group of insurgent fighters throughout the valley and was known to use roadside bombs and rockets to intimidate the local populace," the ISAF said in a statement.

"After ensuring no civilians were in the area, the force called for the air strike which resulted in the death of Tahir and another insurgent," the statement continued.

The district where Tahir died has become one of the Taliban's closest safehavens to Kabul.  A few months ago, the Taliban overran a military base that had been transferred from the U.S. to Afghan security forces, and residents say insurgents regularly set up checkpoints throughout the area.

The ISAF doesn't admit the district is largely Taliban-controlled, but it does admit it has launched an average of one night raid in the district every week in 2011, killing 35 suspected insurgents and detaining more than 80.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


UPDATE: RPG Caused Helicopter Blast, Death Toll Down to One

Photo Courtesy - Staff Sgt. William Tremblay/ISAF/NATO(KABUL, Afghanistan) -- An Afghan interpreter was killed and eight others were wounded after an explosion ripped through a Chinook in eastern Afghanistan Tuesday.  Among the eight wounded were seven U.S. soldiers and one Afghan police officer, according to the International Security Assistance Force.

The helicopter had just landed when an explosion occurred onboard.  The ISAF says the cause of the blast was from a rocket-propelled grenade, or RPG, that was fired at the aircraft.

The U.S. military originally reported two American soldiers had been killed and 10 people had been wounded in the blast.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio