According to officials in Washington, the United States used a drone missile to kill al Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri as he was standing on a balcony at his residence in central Kabul, Afghanistan. This was the biggest blow to the militants since Osama bin Laden was killed more than ten years ago.
Zawahiri, an Egyptian surgeon who had a $25 million bounty on his head and assisted in planning the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the United States that left nearly 3,000 people dead, has not been confirmed to have died by Afghanistan’s Taliban government.
Under the condition of anonymity, U.S. officials claimed that Zawahiri was killed when he stepped outside onto the balcony of his safe house in Kabul at 6:18 a.m. (0148 GMT) on Sunday and was struck by Hellfire missiles fired by an American drone.
In televised remarks from the White House on Monday, U.S. President Joe Biden said, ‘Now justice has been delivered, and this terrorist leader is no more.’ ‘The United States will find you and take you out no matter how long it takes, no matter where you hide,’ the president vowed.
After months of preparation, Biden claimed he gave the go-ahead for the targeted attack, adding that no civilians or family members perished.
Three Taliban administration spokespeople who are accused by the US of breaking a deal by providing shelter to Zawahiri on Tuesday declined to comment.
Zabihullah Mujahid, a Taliban spokesman, previously confirmed that a strike occurred in Kabul on Sunday and condemned it as a breach of ‘international principles.’