Reports: Al-Qaeda leader killed in Kabul drone strike

Al-Qaeda leader Ayman Al-Zawahiri in a still image from a web posting by the terrorist organization's media arm, as-Sahab, on July 27, 2011. (AP

Al-Qaeda leader Ayman Al-Zawahiri in a still image from a web posting by the terrorist organization’s media arm, as-Sahab, on July 27, 2011. (AP Photo)

OAN Newsroom
UPDATED 5:36 PM PT – Monday, August 1, 2022

The Biden administration claimed they have killed the latest leader of Al-Qaeda in Kabul. According to reports Monday, citing unnamed intelligence sources, the CIA conducted a “successful drone strike” that killed Al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri.

“I authorized a precision strike that would remove him from the battlefield, once and for all,” stated Biden.

The operation marked the first publicly announced CIA strike in Afghanistan since Joe Biden’s botched withdrawal of US forces last year. Al-Zawahiri took over as General of Al-Qaeda in 2011 shortly after Osama Bin Laden was killed in his Pakistani hideout. President Joe Biden said the Al-Qaeda leader “was deeply involved in the planning of 9/11” and “was the mastermind behind the attacks against Americans, including the bombing of USS Cole in 2000.”

Biden confirmed no civilian casualties during the drone strike that took out Zawahiri. His death comes as a heavy blow to international terrorism and it may reduce competition between the Taliban and Al-Qaeda in the Afghan powerplay.

Senior Haqqani Taliban figures were aware of Zawahiri’s presence in the area, the official said Monday, in “clear violation of the Doha agreement.” They even took steps to conceal his presence after Saturday’s successful strike, restricting access to the safe house and rapidly relocating members of his family, including his daughter and her children who were intentionally not targeted during the strike and remained unharmed. The US did not alert Taliban officials ahead of Saturday’s strike.

Zawahiri just turned 71-years-old.

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