U.S.-backed Afghan patrol attacked with grenade, three dead including two attackers


Tuesday, April 9th 2002, 12:00 am
By: News On 6


KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) _ An Afghan military patrol working with U.S. forces in eastern Afghanistan was attacked with grenades Tuesday, a local official said. Three people were killed including the two attackers.

The attack occurred on a road in eastern Paktia province, where the United States launched Operation Anaconda last month _ the largest ground offensive of the Afghan war.

A local security official, Ezatullah Ahmadzai, said the attackers hurled two grenades at a military pickup truck in the district of Mullakheil, killing one person and wounding two.

He said pro-U.S. Afghan forces in the bed of the truck opened fire on the two perpetrators, killing both of them.

Ahmadzai said the Afghan attackers were working for a local warlord named Bacha Khan Zardran, who also works alongside U.S. special forces and who has been involved in several recent turf wars in the region.

Ahmadzai said Afghan security forces arrested Halib Khan, one of Zardran's commanders, and turned him over to U.S. troops.

Zardran's forces also fought with U.S. troops in Operation Anaconda. It was not immediately clear why his troops would be involved in an attack on other pro-U.S. Afghans.