July 1 - NATO aircraft kills an insurgent leader linked to a deadly hotel attack in the Afghan capital, coalition says. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT ONLY, NO REPORTER TRACK EDIT CONTAINS 4:3 MATERIAL NATO aircraft killed an insurgent leader linked to a deadly hotel attack in the Afghan capital, the coalition said on Thursday (June 30). The raid took place earlier this week and has raised questions about whether Afghan forces are ready for the looming security transition. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack on the Intercontinental, one of two major hotels used by foreigners and Afghan government officials, a rare night-time raid that began on Tuesday (June 28) and ended five hours later with 12 killed. However, the NATO-led Security Assistance Force (ISAF) said the al Qaeda-linked Haqqani network had also been involved in the assault by nine suicide bombers and gunmen. ISAF identified the Haqqani network leader killed in an air strike as Ismail Jan, who it described as a deputy to the senior Haqqani commander in Afghanistan, Haji Mali Khan. t said he and "several Haqqani fighters" were killed in the air strike in the Gardez district of Paktya province south of Kabul on Wednesday (June 29). The brazen raid came only a week after U.S. President Barack Obama announced a phased withdrawal of combat troops, with 10,000 to leave by the end of this year and another 23,000 by the end September 2012