WASHINGTON: A jihadist group that was formerly Al-Qaeda’s affiliate in Syria confirmed on Monday that an air strike killed a senior leader after the Pentagon said it had targeted him.
Ahmed Salama Mabrouk, an Egyptian also known by his nom de guerre Abu Faraj “was martyred after a coalition air strike in the west of Idlib province,” the Fateh al-Sham Front said in a statement on the Telegram app.
Pentagon spokesman Peter Cook confirmed that a US strike near Idlib had targeted Mabrouk, describing him as “one of Al-Qaeda in Syria’s most senior leaders and a legacy Al-Qaeda terrorist who previously had ties to Osama bin Laden.”
However, officials are “still assessing the results” to determine whether he had in fact been killed in the air raid, Cook stressed.
“His death, if confirmed, would disrupt and degrade coordination among senior AQ leaders and extremists,” he said in a statement.
“The United States military will continue to target Al-Qaeda leaders to disrupt their operations and counter the threat posed by this terrorist group,” he added.