Al-Qaeda Operative Killed in US Airstrike in Syria

Al-Qaeda Operative Killed in US Airstrike in SyriaAl-Qaeda Operative Killed in US Airstrike in Syria

A longtime Al-Qaeda operative and key figure in the so-called Khorasan Group, Muhsin al-Fadhli, was killed in a US airstrike while moving in a vehicle in northwestern Syria two weeks ago, the Pentagon said on Tuesday.

Al-Fadhli, who had previously been targeted and believed by some US officials to have been killed, was traveling in a vehicle on July 8 near Sarmada, Syria, west of Aleppo, when he was hit by an airstrike, the Pentagon said, Reuters reported.

“He was a senior Al-Qaeda facilitator who was among the few trusted Al-Qaeda leaders that received advanced notification of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks,” Navy Captain Jeff Davis, a Pentagon spokesman, said in a statement.

Al-Fadhli was involved in attacks in October 2002 against US Marines on Faylaka Island in Kuwait and against the French ship MV Limburg, Davis said.

“He was the leader of a network of veteran Al-Qaeda operatives … called the Khorasan Group, who are plotting external attacks against the US.”

US officials have described Khorasan as a particularly menacing faction of militants who have been using their sanctuary in Syria to try to organize plots to attack US and other western targets, possibly including airliners.

Al-Fadhli, who was born in Kuwait, was targeted in a US airstrike on Sept. 23, 2014. The SITE monitoring service reported later that month that a militant had tweeted condolences over his death.