May 30, 2015
PESHAWAR, Pakistan (AP) - The deputy head of the Pakistani Taliban says he has temporarily taken over leadership of the group.
The militant group's leader Baitullah Mehsud is believed to have been killed in a CIA missile strike in northwestern Pakistan on Aug. 5, and a captured Taliban spokesman has reportedly acknowledged to authorities that he is dead. But several Taliban commanders have insisted he is still alive.
The organization's deputy head, Maulvi Faqir Mohammad, told The
Associated Press by telephone from an undisclosed location that Mehsud is suffering health problems and that therefore he was taking over the Taliban leadership himself.
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