The United States discharged Ayman al-Zawahiri, the leader of al-Qaeda and one of the world’s most wanted terrorists, who oversaw the attacks of September 11, 2001along with the group’s founder, Osama bin Laden, according to White House officials.
“Over the weekend, the United States carried out a counter-terrorist operation against a major Al Qaeda target in Afghanistan. The operation was successful and there were no civilian casualties,” a senior administration official said.
Zawahiri was killed in a CIA drone strike in Kabul over the weekend. According to a Taliban spokesman a loud explosion was heard on Sunday at 6 a.m. in an air raid on a residential house.
When US military forces withdrew from Afghanistan in August 2021, Biden administration officials said that would retain the ability to carry out attacks from other locations against terrorist forces inside Afghanistan.
The attack on Zawahiri is the first known counter-terrorism attack there since the withdrawal.