Afghanistan security forces have killed a wanted terrorist.
Afghanistan security forces have killed Abu Muhsin al-Masri, a senior al-Qaeda leader who was on the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (FBI) Most Wanted Terrorist list, according to Afghanistan’s intelligence service.
Al-Masri, an Egyptian national believed to be al-Qaeda’s second-in-command, was killed during a special operation in the central Ghazni province, Afghanistan’s National Directorate of Security (NDS) said in a tweet late on Saturday.
Al-Masri has been charged in the United States with having provided material support and resources to a foreign terrorist organisation, and conspiracy to kill US nationals. However, this made the US issue a warrant for his arrest in December 2018.
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At least 57 others were wounded in the attack in the area that is home to many from Afghanistan’s minority.
Last month, the US secretary of state, Mike Pompeo, said fewer than 200 al-Qaida operatives remain in Afghanistan. This month marks 19 years since the US invaded Afghanistan to topple the Taliban rulers. Al-Qaida militants had harboured behind the September 11 attacks.
The US has been gradually drawing down its troops from Afghanistan after striking a deal with the Taliban in February.
Under that deal, foreign forces will leave Afghanistan by May 2021. This will happen in exchange for counter-terrorism guarantees from the Taliban. Which agreed to negotiate a permanent ceasefire and a power-sharing formula with the Afghan government.
The intra-Afghan peace process kicked off in the Qatari capital, Doha, last month. Despite the talks, fighting between Taliban and Afghan government forces has raged in recent weeks.