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Top al Qaeda leader killed in US drone strike in Syria: Report

The US Central Command (Centcom) stated that Abu-Ahmed was killed in the September 20 drone strike near Idlib in Syria, adding that there were zero civilian casualties this time.

SNS | Washington |

A senior al-Qaeda leader was killed in a drone airstrike in Syria, Fox News reported citing a US defense official. On September 20, Salim Abu-Ahmad was killed in a US airstrike near Idlib, Syria.

Salim was responsible for planning, funding, and approving trans-regional al Qaeda attacks, according to Fox News. US defence officials said. “There were no indications of civilian casualties.”

Later, the US Central Command (Centcom) told the Military Times that Abu-Ahmed was killed in the September 20 drone strike near Idlib in Syria, adding that there were zero civilian casualties this time and that the United States will continue to target international terrorist networks abroad whose actions risk its interests and allies across the world.

Washington has carried out attacks in Idlib before targeting al Qaeda terrorists and the leader of the IS, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, who was hiding in the province after fleeing from eastern Syria.

Earlier, on September 13, a military aircraft, presumably of the US Air Force, struck at two cars on the Syrian-Iraqi border, a source in the Iraqi militia, the Popular Mobilization Forces, told Sputnik.

“Two cars were hit by an airstrike on the border between Iraq and Syria,” the source said. According to him, the strike was allegedly inflicted by the US Air Force

On September 20, the Associated Press reported, citing rescue workers and a war monitor, that the US drone strike in rebel-controlled northwestern Syria hit a vehicle travelling on a rural road; and that at least one person was killed in the incident.

White Helmets, a civil defence team, told AP that the “unidentified body” was lifted from the car along the Idlib-Binnish road east of the Idlib province in Syria. The charred vehicle, split in the middle, lay on the side of the rural road in an orchid.

The US central command later said that American forces had conducted a “kinetic counterterrorism strike” near the Idlib province targeting a senior leader of al Qaeda. In a statement at the time, US navy lieutenant Josie Lynne Lenny said that “initial indications are that we struck the individual we were aiming for, and there are no indications of civilian casualties as a result of the strike.” No additional details were released officially thereafter.

(With ANI inputs)