Yemeni al Qaeda leader killed in US airstrike | News | DW | 07.05.2012
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Yemeni al Qaeda leader killed in US airstrike

An al Qaeda leader in Yemen has been killed in a suspected US drone raid in the east of the country. Fahd al-Quso was wanted in connection with the 2000 bombing of the American warship USS Cole.

Yemeni officials say an air strike carried out by the CIA has killed a top al Qaeda leader, wanted for his role in the bombing of a US warship in the port of Aden in 2000.

Speaking on a condition of anonymity, the military officials said Fahd al-Quso was hit by a missile as he stepped out of his vehicle. At least one other al-Qaida operative died in the attack.

Al-Quso was on the FBI's most wanted list in connection with the seaborne attack 12 years ago on the US Navy destroyer, which left 17 sailors dead and more than 40 wounded. The US had offered a $5 million (3.9 million euro) reward for information leading to his capture

A US government official described al-Quso as a "senior terrorist operative," who had been actively planning further attacks against the United States and Yemen.

Speaking on a condition of anonymity the official alleged that Fahd al-Quso had been involved in numerous attacks over many years that murdered Americans as well as Yemeni men, women and children.

He was also thought to have been one of the most senior al Qaeda leaders publicly linked to a 2009 Christmas attack on an airliner.

US officials said on Sunday that the drone strike was carried out by the CIA after an extended surveillance operation by the CIA and US military. It had been authorized by the Yemini government, which is currently working with the United States to eliminate al-Qaeda in southern Yemen.

ccp/ipj (AP, AFP)