An air strike by the United States of America has killed Ayman Al-Zawahiri, the emir of Al-Qaeda and Osama bin Laden’s suspected deputy.
Biden described Al-Zawahiri as “bin Laden’s leader” who, apart from the 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, among others, also played a major part in carrying out other major Al Qaeda attacks and operations.
During the four coordinated suicide terrorist attacks on the US in 2001, at least 2,977 people were reported to have lost their lives.
“He (Al-Zawahiri) played a key role in the bombing of US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania, killing 224 and wounding over 4,500 others,” Biden’s statement read in part.
“Al-Zawahiri carved a trail of murder and violence against American citizens, American service members, American diplomats, and American interests. Since the United States delivered justice to bin Laden 11 years ago, Zawahiri has been a leader of Al Qaeda—the leader.
“From hiding, he coordinated Al Qaeda’s branches and all around the world—including setting priorities, for providing operational guidance that called for and inspired attacks against U.S. targets.
“He made videos, including in recent weeks, calling for his followers to attack the United States and our allies.
“Now justice has been delivered, and this terrorist leader is no more.”
A surgeon by profession, Egyptian-born Al-Zawahiri is a qualified doctor who once practised in Egypt, Saudi and Afghanistan.
It was while he was working in Saudi Arabia that he first met Bin Laden in Jeddah. He would later become Bin Laden’s physician and personal advisor.
According to Reuters, Al-Zawahiri moved to a “very safe place” in Kabul a few months after the Taliban took control of Afghanistan in August 2021.
The 71-year-old was killed in his home in Kabul, the Afghanistan capital.
Biden said that the attack did not hurt other civilians or members of Al-Zawahiri’s family.
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