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Insurgent leaders seized on train

Two leaders of the al Qaida-linked Haqqani insurgent network have been apprehended in overnight raids in eastern and northern Afghanistan, Nato said.

A joint Afghan and coalition force in the eastern province of Khost captured a Haqqani leader known for transporting bomb-making materials.

He is the 12th leading member of the network to be captured in the province this month, Nato said.

Intelligence reports led the security force to a compound in Tere Zayi district to search for the man, who was detained along with one of his associates.

In Baghlan, a joint force targeted a series of compounds and captured another key Haqqani figure, who served as a liaison between the network and Taliban operatives in northern Afghanistan. Six of his associates were also taken into custody.

Nato said the facilitator - a top target for the international force - was reportedly in contact with Pakistan-based senior leadership from both insurgent groups.

"The Haqqani network relied on the facilitator to help expand their operations from eastern Afghanistan to the northern part of the country," said US Army Colonel Rafael Torres, a spokesman for the coalition.

"His capture should degrade their connections to the north."


From Belfast Telegraph