The U.S. Defense Department confirmed that a senior al-Qaida leader was killed earlier this month by a U.S. airstrike in Afghanistan, Pentagon Press Secretary Peter Cook said in a statement issued Friday.
“We have confirmed that Abu Khalil al-Sudani, a high-ranking al-Qaida operational commander, was killed by a U.S. airstrike in Bermal district, Paktika province, Afghanistan, on July 11, 2015,” Cook said in the statement.
Al-Sudani, a senior shura member and head of al-Qaida suicide and explosive operations, is directly linked to external attack plotting against the United States, Cook said in the statement.
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The deceased al-Qaida leader also had directed operations against coalition, Afghan and Pakistani forces and maintained a close association with al-Qaida’s top leader, Ayman al-Zawahiri, Cook added.
Al-Sudani was one of three known violent extremists killed in the strike, Cook said in the statement.
Al-Sudani’s demise will further degrade al-Qaida operations across the globe, Cook added.