The United States on Friday confirmed the death of top al-Qaeda leader Faruq al-Qatani in a drone strike in northwestern Afghanistan in October. The Pentagon stated that the death of the al-Qaeda leader has dealt a major blow to the terror group in the country.
"We can now confirm that the precision strike conducted by the US military on October 23 in Kunar, Afghanistan, resulted in the death of senior Al-Qaeda leader Faruqal-Qatani," Pentagon Press Secretary Peter Cook said.
Al-Qatani was one of the terror group's main plotters against the United States and was al-Qaeda's emir for eastern Afghanistan. Al-Qatani was killed two weeks ago in a precision strike, Pentagon said. Reports state that the terror group's senior leader was also involved in plots targeting Europe.
"This successful strike is another example of US operations to degrade international terrorist networks and target terrorist leaders who seek to attack the US homeland, our interests and our allies abroad," Cook added.
Cook also said that another senior leader of al-Qaeda in Afghanistan, Bilalal-Urabi, was also targeted in a different air strike in the region, however, the results of the attacks are not known yet. The Pentagon press secretary said that the organization is still assessing the results of the second strike.
Reports state that the United States Department of Defense has been hunting for Al-Qatani for four years. The terror group leader had ties with Osama bin Laden before his death in 2011 US raid. Saudi-born al-Qahtani was placed on a US list of most wanted terrorists in February.