Sunday, January 15, 2006

"Al-Zawahiri survives, Pakistan slams US"

That is the title of a story found onBangkok Post.
Islamabad (dpa) - Hours after dismissing US media reports on the killing of the deputy leader of the al-Qaeda terror network in its territory, Pakistan Saturday lodged a protest with the US ambassador to Pakistan about firing across the Afghan border into its territory.

"According to preliminary investigations there was a foreign presence in the area and that in all probability was targeted from across the border in Afghanistan. As a result of this act there has been the loss of innocent civilian lives, which we condemn," a foreign ministry statement said Saturday evening...

A Pakistani army official said the operation in the Pakistani tribal region of Bajur had been based on false information and Egyptian-born Ayman al-Zawahiri was not among dead...

At least 18 people including women and children were killed in a U.S. military bombing early Friday.

U.S. media reports following the airstrike Friday on three residential compounds in Damadola village on the Afghan border said the al-Qaeda second-in-command, Egyptian-born al-Zawahiri, had been the target of the attack, and was possibly killed.

Pakistani Information Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed meanwhile said Saturday that his ministry had heard the reports of al-Zawahiri's death, but that there was "no confirmation" of the killing...

Five high-level al-Qaeda figures were killed in the attack, ABC News on Friday quoted Pakistani military sources as saying.

The compound reportedly was known to be frequented by senior al- Qaeda operatives, including 54-year-old al-Zawahiri. Pakistan was "heavily involved" in the raid, the Washington Post said.

Al-Zawahiri is America's second most-wanted terrorist suspect after al-Qaeda kingpin Osama bin Laden. The U.S. has a 25-million- dollar bounty on his head.

posted by David at 4:58 AM :: Permalink ::