A joint U.S.-Afghan military assault began against Dahaneh, a Taliban stronghold in southern Afghanistan's Helmand province on August 12. Associated Press journalists traveling with the forces reported that militants fired small arms, mortars, and rocket-propelled grenades after helicopters dropped the troops over Taliban lines. The forces were supported by British-made Harrier jets, which are used by both the British military and U.S. Marines.
The United States has placed 50 suspected Afghan drug traffickers with ties to the Taliban on a Pentagon target list of 367 insurgents to be captured or killed, the New York Times reported on August 10, citing a Senate Foreign Relations Committee report to be released this week.
Pakistan's foreign minister, Shah Mahmood Qureshi, told reporters in Islamabad on August 7, "According to my intelligence information, the news [that Taliban leader Baitullah Mehsud is dead] is correct.... And to be 100 percent sure we are going for ground verification and once the ground verification reconfirms, which I think is almost confirmed, then we will be 100 percent sure," Qureshi said.
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was sworn in for a second term as Iran's president on August 5, as hundreds of opposition supporters demonstrated against his reelection.