US drone strike 'kills al-Qa'ida deputy leader Saeed al-Shihri'


Ahmed Al-Haj
Tuesday 11 September 2012 13:52

Al-Qa'ida's second-in-command in Yemen has been killed after the car he was travelling in was hit by a missile fired from a US drone, according to officials in Saana.

Saeed al-Shihri, a Saudi national, died along with five others as he drove away from a house in the southern Hadramawt province yesterday, officials in Yemen's defence ministry said.

A senior official at the Yemeni President's office confirmed the attack, but said DNA tests have yet to establish the dead man's identity.

If confirmed, the death of Shihri would be a major blow to the group as it faces a major offensive in the south. The Yemeni military has retaken several towns that had been captured by the terror network during political unrest inspired by the Arab Spring last year.

Al-Qa'ida's Yemeni branch – known as al-Qa'ida in the Arabian Peninsula – is seen as the world's most active division of the militant group, planning and carrying out attacks against targets in and outside US territory.

Meanwhile President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi said yesterday that "there are tribal chiefs and senior officials who are covering up for al-Qa'ida figures" in Abyan and Shabwa provinces and that there were "impeding security measures to arrest them".


Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in