Qari Ajmal an alleged wanted mastermind of the attack on Sri Lankan cricket team in Lahore was reportedly killed in Afghanistan.
Afghan police officials claimed on Sunday a highly wanted militant linked to a number of high-profile attacks was killed in a joint Afghan-US special forces operation in eastern Afghanistan.
Ajmal was responsible for several militant attacks in Pakistan, was killed in Afghanistan’s Paktika province, three Taliban commanders said.
Ajmal, a leader of the banned Lashkar-e-Jhangi (LeJ), had fled to Waziristan after the attack and was associated with Hakimullah Mehsood, the chief of the outlawed Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), who was killed in November 2013, tribal sources said. He later fled to Afghanistan like many other Pakistani militants and had been living with Mehsud Taliban in the Afghan province of Paktika, which borders Pakistan.
Ajmal, was wanted for major attacks, most notably one on the Sri Lankan cricket team in 2009 that killed six police officers and wounded seven players.
The operation started at midnight and lasted until early Saturday morning, they said.
All three spoke on condition of anonymity for fear of retribution.
Paktika police Chief General Khalil Ziayee confirmed the operation, saying one militant was killed and three arrested. He gave no further details.
Brigadier General Charles Cleveland, the US military spokesman in Afghanistan, also confirmed the operation but did not say which militants were targeted.
“Afghan and US forces did conduct a counter-terrorism operation in Paktika,” he said, but added that for security reasons “we do not discuss the details of counter-terror operations.”
Pakistan and Afghanistan share a sizable lawless border region, which serves as a safe haven for local and Al-Qaeda-linked foreign militants.
They routinely shuttle back and forth across the border to evade security forces.
However, Pakistan has recently improved its border management plan with gates on major crossing points between Pakistan and Afghanistan in a bid to check cross-border infiltration of militants.