US drone strike in Afghanistan kills senior al-Qaeda leader

The senior al-Qaeda leader taken out in a drone strike on March 19 in Afghanistan was also a key figurehead in Pakistan’s Taliban branch. 

The United States has taken out senior al-Qaeda military commander Qari Yasin in a drone strike, US Defense Secretary James Mattis revealed on Saturday.

“The death of Qari Yasin is evidence terrorists who defame Islam and deliberately target innocent people will not escape justice,” remarked Mattis in a statement.

The drone strike took place in eastern Afghanistan, in the Paktika Province on March 19. The Pentagon referred to Yasin as “a well-known al Qaida terrorist leader responsible for the deaths of dozens of innocent victims, including two American service members.”

Yasin, was a senior terrorist figure from Balochistan, Pakistan who plotted many al Qaida terror attacks, including the bombing of the Marriott Hotel in Islamabad, Pakistan on September 20, 2008. The attack killed dozens including, two US servicemen, US Air Force Maj. Rodolfo I. Rodriguez, and Navy Cryptologic Technician Third Class Petty Officer Matthew J. O’Bryant.

The Pentagon added the al-Qaeda leader was “also responsible for the 2009 attack on a bus carrying the Sri Lankan cricket team in Lahore,” which killed 6 team members, 6 Pakistani policemen, and 2 civilians.

Yasin was affiliated with the Taliban’s Pakistani branch, Tehrik-e Taliban.

By: Jonathan Benedek, World Israel News