Iran Reportedly Paid Taliban Fighters To Attack U.S. Troops In Afghanistan


Iran reportedly paid bounties to Taliban fighters to target U.S. forces in Afghanistan.
A Pentagon briefing document said a foreign government paid the Haqqani network, led by a top Taliban leader, for at least 6 attacks carried out against U.S. forces in Afghanistan in 2019 alone. Two sources familiar with the intelligence told CNN that the foreign government referenced in the document is Iran. One of those attacks was the suicide bombing at Bagram Air Force Base in December which killed two civilians and injured more than 75 others.
The Bagram Air Force Base attack occurred less than a month before the U.S. killed General Qassem Soleimani, the commander of Iran’s Quds Force, in a drone strike in Baghdad. The suspected Iranian bounty plot was cited by US officials as a partial justification for the Soleimani strike, a current administration official told CNN.
The Trump administration has not spoken publicly about the intelligence or condemned Iran over the alleged bounties in an apparent effort to shield the peace talks.
According to CNN

US intelligence agencies assessed that Iran offered bounties to Taliban fighters for targeting American and coalition troops in Afghanistan, identifying payments linked to at least six attacks carried out by the militant group just last year alone, including a suicide bombing at a US air base in December, CNN has learned.

"Bounties" were paid by a foreign government, identified to CNN as Iran, to the Haqqani network -- a terrorist group that is led by the second highest ranking leader of the Taliban -- for their attack on Bagram Air Base on December 11, which killed two civilians and injured more than 70 others, including four US personnel, according to a Pentagon briefing document reviewed by CNN.
The name of the foreign government that made these payments remains classified but two sources familiar with the intelligence confirmed to CNN that it refers to Iran.
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