air strike kills al-qaida leader in iraq

Al-Qaida in Iraq leader killed in air strike, U.S. says

By Alexandra Zavisand Julian E. Barnes
Los Angeles Times

BAGHDAD, Iraq – U.S. forces killed a top Al-Qaida in Iraq leader this week whom they believe was responsible for the kidnapping and killing of American soldiers last year, a U.S. general said Friday.

Abu Osama al-Tunisi was killed Tuesday south of Baghdad in an air strike, the latest in a series of operations targeting the leadership of the Sunni militant group, Brig. Gen. Joseph Anderson told Pentagon reporters via teleconference from Iraq.

“His death is a key loss,” Anderson said of al-Tunisi….

An Air Force F-16 jet dropped two 500-pound bombs on a building where Tunisi was suspected of meeting with other Al-Qaida in Iraq militants near Mussayib, about 40 miles south of Baghdad, Anderson said. Two other suspects were killed in the blast, and two were detained, he said.

Tunisi, Anderson said, was originally from Tunisia and was considered the “emir of foreign terrorists” responsible for bringing Sunni Arab fighters into Iraq.


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