Airstrikes in Syria Killed 11 al-Qaeda Operatives, Including Bin Laden Friend

February 9, 2017 Updated: February 9, 2017
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The Pentagon says two U.S. airstrikes in Syria killed 11 al-Qaeda operatives, including one with ties to Osama bin Laden and other senior al-Qaeda leaders.

A spokesman, Navy Capt. Jeff Davis, said a single airstrike on Feb. 3 killed 10 operatives in a building used as an al-Qaida meeting site.

A second strike the next day killed Abu Hani al-Masri, identified by the Pentagon as an al-Qaeda operative who oversaw the creation and operation of al-Qaida training camps in Afghanistan in the 1980s and 1990s.

Davis said al-Masri had ties to bin Laden and to Ayman al-Zawahiri, who became the top leader of al-Qaeda when bin Laden was killed by U.S. forces in 2011.

Both U.S. airstrikes were near Idlib in northwestern Syria.

Masri was “a legacy al Qaeda terrorist with ties to the group’s senior leaders, including Ayman al-Zawahiri and Osama bin Laden,” Eric Pahon, a Department of Defense spokesman, told CNN.

Epoch Times contributed to this report.