A Taliban spokesman in Afghanistan has rejected reports that the son of the founder of the powerful Haqqani militant network has been killed.

Zabiullah Mujahid said in an email sent to reporters late Saturday that Badruddin Haqqani is “alive and healthy” in Afghanistan.

The statement conflicts with assertions by a senior Taliban commander that a U.S. drone strike in Pakistan killed Haqqani. His death would mark a major blow to the organisation founded by his father, Jalaluddin Haqqani, viewed by the U.S. as a powerful enemy in neighbouring Afghanistan. Pakistani intelligence officials have also said they are 90 per cent certain Haqqani was killed in Tuesday’s strike.

The email calls the reports false rumours and says Haqqani is occupied with his responsibilities in Afghanistan.

More In: International | News