Al-Qaida leading member dies of injuries from U.S. drone strikeSouce:Xinhua Publish By Thomas Whittle Updated 21/10/2012 2:05 pm in World / 1 comment
ADEN, Yemen, Oct. 20 — A leading member of the Yemen- based al-Qaida offshoot died Saturday after he was wounded in a U. S. drone strike earlier this month in the southeastern province of Shabwa, a Yemeni government official told Xinhua.
The local al-Qaida leader, Adel al-Abab, was pronounced dead at a local medical center after being critically injured in a U.S. drone strike in a mountainous region in Shabwa, the government official said, requesting anonymity.
A number of al-Qaida militants were travelling along with al- Abab in the al-Saeed area in Shabwa’s suburbs when their pick-up trucks were hit by missiles, the government source said.
Al-Abab was critically injured and was taken to a nearby medical center, but he did not survive his grave wounds, he added.
Two tribal chiefs confirmed told Xinhua anonymously that ” several al-Qaida militants including foreign nationals were killed in the U.S. aerial attack that happened in the past few weeks in Shabwa.”
Sources close to the Yemeni al-Qaida branch declined to comment.
Yemen has undergone a political transition after the resignation of former President Ali Abdullah Saleh earlier this year under a peaceful transfer of power backed by the United Nations.
Restoring security in Yemen has become a priority after last year’s unrest created a security vacuum, which was exploited by the insurgent al-Qaida wing to control swaths of remote lands and expand activities to major cities.
The United States has beefed up anti-terror cooperation with the Yemeni government since President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi took office in February, one year after a political upheaval that allowed scores of terrorists to gain foothold in the country’s south.