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Ghani called Pakistan's army chief and Prime Minister Nasirul Mulk to confirm Fazlullah's death, which Mulk said "underscores the importance of dealing with terrorists that threaten the security of both countries", according to a Pakistani government statement.

The countdown for the Taliban ceasefire has begun, the Afghanistan Ministry of Defence said.

President Ghani also informed the PM about positive developments following the recent ceasefire announcement which would help pave the way for the Afghan peace process to consolidate. The Afghan Taliban announced their cease-fire after Ghani unilaterally declared a temporary cease-fire for the holidays on June 7.

"We hope this pause leads to dialogue and progress on reconciliation and a lasting end to hostilities", he said.

Pakistani Taliban sources also confirmed Fazlullah's death, saying a detailed statement would be issued within hours.

Defense Ministry spokesman Mohammad Radmanish told TOLOnews that the strike happened at about 2:30am local time. Yet Fazlullah's death would be welcome news in Pakistan, where the government has repeatedly complained that Fazlullah and his Tehrik-e-Taliban had found safe havens across the border in Afghanistan.

The leader of the Pakistani Taliban was killed by a US drone strike, an Afghan official said Friday.

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Over the weekend, ecstatic men and children crowded around the soldiers and Taliban fighters, some of whom had checked in their weapons at the entrances to cities, and urged them to turn their ceasefire into a permanent peace. He had been on the run since his loyalists were routed in a major military operation in Swat in 2009. He was known as Mullah Radio for his fiery broadcasts. "Nobody has any clue how many Taliban militants are now hiding in civilian areas". "He terrorized the Swat Valley, ordered the assassination attempt on Malala, killed barbers, DVD (shop) owners, dancing girls, Sufi mystics". She received the Nobel peace prize in 2014.

The US State Department in March announced a $5 million reward for help locating Fazlullah, who has been linked to bloody attacks in Pakistan and the 2010 attempted Times Square auto bombing in NY.

It said the group has "demonstrated a close alliance with al-Qaida" and had given explosives training to Faisal Shahzad, the would-be Times Square bomber.

Pakistan has always been accused of supporting the Afghan Taliban and providing safe haven to its leaders - charges Islamabad denies.

Pakistan's military says that it has killed at least 4,000 fighters working for the TTP and its allies since 2013.

He has been operating in Afghanistan for years.

A retired Pakistani Brigadier, Mehmood Shah, welcomed the drone killing.


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