A senior Al-Qaeda commander who had links to major attacks in Pakistan and on Sri Lankan team was killed in a US drone strike in Afghanistan.
The terrorist Qari Yasin who was responsible for plotting the September 20, 2008, bombing at the Marriott Hotel in Islamabad that killed dozens of people. US Air Force Maj Rodolfo I Rodriguez and Navy Cryptologic Technician Third Class Petty Officer Matthew J OBryant were killed in the bombing.
He was also responsible for an attack on a bus which carrying the Sri Lankan team in 2009 in Lahore which killed six Pakistani police officers and two civilians, and six team members were also injured.
Pentagon said he, a member of the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan group was killed on 19 March in Afghanistan’s eastern Paktika province.
Defence Secretary Jim Mattis said in a statement, “The death of Qari Yasin is evidence that terrorists who defame Islam and deliberately target innocent people will not escape justice.”
The Pentagon confirmation comes some days after the Pakistani Taliban confirmed that Yasin was killed in a US drone strike.
A spokesman of the terror outfit, Mohammad Khurasani said Yasin was a “trainer of Mujahideen”. He stated three companions of the senior al-Qaeda leader were also killed in the US drone strike.
According to Long War Journal, the US had been searching for him for at least four years.
The officials said he was also behind the failed attack on former President Pervez Musharaff in 2003 and former Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz in 2004.
Pakistani media reported Yasin was also responsible for other attacks including an October attack on the Pakistani military headquarters in Rawalpindi in which nine soldiers and two civilians were killed. In May, a bomb and shooting attack on the Lahore office of the Inter-Service Intelligence Agency killed at least 30 people including four ISI operatives and 14 policemen.
Yasin was in the Pakistan’s most wanted list. Reuters reported Pakistan’s Counter-Terrorism Department had announced a reward of two million rupees ($19,000) for Yasin.