WASHINGTON – President Donald Trump confirmed on Thursday (Feb 6) that US forces had killed the leader of militant group Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula in Yemen.
The US “conducted a counter-terrorism operation in Yemen that successfully eliminated Qassim al-Raymi, a founder and the leader of Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP),” Trump said in a White House statement.
AQAP had claimed responsibility on Sunday for a December shooting at a US naval base in which a Saudi officer killed three sailors.
“Under Raymi, AQAP committed unconscionable violence against civilians in Yemen and sought to conduct and inspire numerous attacks against the United States and our forces,” Trump said.
“His death further degrades AQAP and the global Al-Qaeda movement, and it brings us closer to eliminating the threats these groups pose to our national security,” he said.
Trump did not say when Raymi was killed.