A US military air strike in Afghanistan last month killed one of the senior Al-Qaeda leaders in the country, the Pentagon said on Friday.
“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 Faruq al-Qatani,” the Pentagon Press Secretary, Peter Cook, said on Friday.
Faruq al-Qatani served as Al-Qaeda's leader for northeastern Afghanistan and had been assigned by the group's leadership to re-establish safe havens in the country.
The Pentagon had been hunting for al-Qatani for four years. He had longstanding ties with Osama bin Laden before his death in the 2011 US raid on his Pakistan compound.
“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 said.
He said the Pentagon was still assessing the result of a separate strike on the same day targeting another al-Qaeda leader in Afghanistan, Bilal al-Utabi.