Senior Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan commander dead

Peshawar: A top Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan commander, believed to be the mastermind of the 2014 Peshawar school massacre, has been killed, the terror group said today.

“We confirm the death of Khalifa Umar Mansoor,” Taliban spokesperson Muhammad Khorasani said in a statement sent to journalists via email.

Usman Mansoor Hafizullah will replace Umar Mansoor as the group’s commander in Darra Adam Khel and Peshawar, Dawn quoted Khorasani as saying in the statement.

Reports of his death had emerged in 2016 as well, which could not be confirmed.

The Taliban claim comes a day after six suspected TTP militants were killed in a US drone strike targeting alleged militant hideouts in the Pak-Afghan border region close to Kurram Agency.

Umar Mansoor, who had claimed responsibility for a deadly attack on Bacha Khan University in 2016, was said to be the mastermind of the 2014 massacre at the Army Public School in Peshawar where at least 144 people, mostly children, were brutally murdered by the heavily-armed attackers.