US air strike kills al-Qa'ida boss in Somalia
Thursday 01 May 2008
US war planes killed an Islamist rebel said to be al-Qa'ida's leader in Somalia and at least a dozen other people today in Washington's biggest success in efforts to contain an insurgency raging since 2007.
The rebels said Aden Hashi Ayro - who led al Shabaab militants blamed for attacks on government troops and their Ethiopian allies - died in the first big hit for a string of US air-strikes on Somali insurgents in the last year.
"Infidel planes bombed Dusamareb," Shabaab spokesman Mukhtar Ali Robow told Reuters by phone, referring to a town in central Somalia, where body parts lay strewn round a wrecked house.
"Two of our important people, including Ayro, were killed."
The death of the Afghanistan-trained militant is likely to bolster the Western-backed Somali government's efforts to stem the insurgency that has been gaining ground in recent months. But it is sure to enrage Ayro's fellow militants, who say they are fighting a jihad to eject Ethiopian troops.
Ayro was a key figure on the ground masterminding the Islamists' Iraq-style insurgency against the allied Somali-Ethiopian troops. The insurgency had intensified in recent weeks, with scores of deaths in Mogadishu and a series of hit-and-run raids by the Islamists in towns outside the capital.
Dusamareb residents said several other Shabaab fighters and civilians were killed in the pre-dawn air strike. Local broadcaster Shabelle said insurgent leaders had been meeting there and put the total death toll at 15.
"Bits of human flesh are scattered on the ruins of the building," witness Farah Hussein told Reuters. "People are counting the skulls to know the exact figure."
Amina Warsame, another local, said residents were woken at around 2 a.m. (Wednesday 2300 GMT) by two huge blasts and counted four planes overhead. Shabelle said they were U.S. AC-130 gunships.
Robow said Ayro had trained many men: "We know our enemy is happy today, but their work will continue."
- 2 Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb
- 3 A teacher speaks out: 'I'm effectively being forced out of a career that I wanted to love'
- 4 Cee Lo Green: It is only rape if the victim is conscious
Perez Hilton apologises for publishing Jennifer Lawrence naked 4Chan photos
Emma Watson on Jennifer Lawrence naked photo leak: 'Even worse than seeing women's privacy violated is reading the comments'
Ariana Grande nude photos leak: Pictures are completely fake, say representatives
Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb
Katie Hopkins breaks down in tears over weight gain challenge: ‘I hate fat people for making me do this’
Rotherham child sex abuse scandal: Labour Home Office to be probed over what Tony Blair's government knew - and when
What do immigrants really think of Britain? Polish immigrant's Reddit post goes viral
Ashya King: Parents of five-year-old boy refused permission to visit him in hospital and denied bail at Spanish court
With Douglas Carswell joining Ukip, my party has taken another giant step forward
When elitism grips the top of British society to this extent, there is only one answer: abolish private schools
Ashya King: 'Cruel NHS has not given us the treatment we need', says father of five-year-old with brain tumour who fled to Spain
£30000 - £45000 per annum + benefits+bonus+package: Harrington Starr: Front-Of...
£700 per day: Harrington Starr: Quantitative Developer C++, Python, STL, R, PD...
£700 per day: Harrington Starr: Java/Calypso Developer Java, Calypso, J2EE, J...
£500 per day: Harrington Starr: SQL Developer SQL, C#, Stored Procedures, MDX...