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US Raid Kills 7 Suspected Al Qaida Militants in Eastern Afghanistan


U.S. officials say a military operation in eastern Afghanistan killed seven suspected al Qaida operatives. At least 35 suspected militants have now been killed after two days of violent clashes throughout the country.

U.S. spokesman Sergeant Chris Miller says the latest fighting occurred on Thursday during a pre-dawn raid targeting a suspected al Qaida hideout in the eastern province of Kunar.

"Afghan and coalition forces came under direct fire when approaching the compound and defended themselves with return fire," he said.

He says a number of suspected terrorists were killed in the raid and four others were detained after the firefight.

A large cache of weapons, ammunition and grenades were taken from the compound.

U.S. officials say a young child was also killed during the battle.

American forces have launched a series of operations in the region pursuing al Qaida and Taleban militants.

Separately, NATO and Afghan forces in southern Afghanistan killed at least 29 suspected Taleban insurgents on Wednesday.