The Latest: Kerry praises killing of Taliban leader

The Latest on the killing of Taliban leader Mullah Mohammed Akhtar Mansour in a drone strike (all times local):

12:30 p.m.

U.S. Secretary of State John is praising the killing of Taliban leader Mullah Mohammed Akhtar Mansour in a drone strike.

U.S. officials have confirmed that Mansour was targeted, but have not yet confirmed whether Mansour was killed.

However Kerry, speaking during a visit to Myanmar, repeatedly referred to Mansour in the past tense.

"Mansour posed a continuing imminent threat to U.S. personnel in Afghanistan, Afghan civilians, Afghan security forces and members of Resolute Support," Kerry said. "Peace is what we want. Mansour was a threat to that effort."

Kerry called for a post-Mansour Taliban to engage in serious peace negotiations with the Kabul government, saying, "It is time for Afghans to stop fighting and to start building a real future together."


10:30 a.m.

A senior commander with the Afghan Taliban says the militant group's leader Mullah Akhtar Mansour has been killed in a U.S. drone strike.

Mullah Abdul Rauf told The Associated Press Sunday that Mansour died in the strike late Friday night.

He says the strike took place "in the Afghanistan-Pakistan border area."

The office of Afghan President Ashraf Ghani confirmed the strike but could not confirm Mansour's death.

Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah, however, says that Mansour is "more than likely" dead.

Mansour formally led the Taliban after the death of the movement's founder, Mullah Mohammad Omar, was announced last summer.

Mansour, Mullah Omar's deputy, concealed Mullah Omar's death for more than two years, and ran the Taliban in his name until the death was revealed by the Afghan government.