Pentagon: US drops biggest non-nuclear bomb in Afghanistan

(AhlulBayt News Agency) - The US military has used its GBU-43/B Massive Ordnance Air Blast Bomb (MOAB), nicknamed “the mother of all bombs,” for the first time in combat. The US Air Force used it in Afghanistan to target ISIS tunnels and personnel.

The US has dropped the "mother of all bombs" - the largest non-nuclear weapon ever used in combat by the US military - on an area of eastern Afghanistan known to be populated by Isis-affiliated militants.

The Pentagon said the strike was the first time the 21,000lb weapon had been used in combat operations.

A spokesperson for the US Department of Defense confirmed to The Independent that a MC-130 aircraft dropped a GBU-43 bomb at 7pm local time.

The weapon is known in the US Air Force by its nickname MOAB, or "mother of all bombs". MOAB stands for massive ordinance air blast.

Pentagon spokesman Adam Stump said the bomb was dropped on a cave complex believed to be used by fighters affiliated to Isis in the Achin district of Nangarhar, close to the border with Pakistan.

The mission had been in the planning stages for months, the Pentagon said in a separate statement. However, they "did not have the information" on whether the mission was being planned during the previous Obama administration.

US Army General John W Nicholson, commander of the country's forces in Afghanistan, said in a written statement that the strike was designed to minimize the risk to Afghan and US forces conducting clearing operations in the Achin area "while maximizing the destruction" of ISIS terrorists and facilities. He said Isis has been using improvised explosive devices, bunkers and tunnels to strengthen its defenses.

White House press secretary Sean Spicer said the US had used a “large, powerful and accurately-delivered weapon” to disrupt the movements of militants in the country.

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