US captures al-Qaeda leader in Libya
A file photograph from February 17 2011 shows al-Shabaab fighters on the outskirts of Mogadishu, Somalia. US forces launched raids in Libya and Somalia on Saturday, two weeks after the deadly Islamist attack on a Nairobi shopping mall, capturing a top al-Qaeda figure wanted for the 1998 US embassy bombings in Kenya and Tanzania, US officials said. The Pentagon said senior al-Qaeda figure Anas al Liby was seized in the raid in Libya, but a US official said the raid on the Somali town of Barawe failed to capture or kill the intended target from the al-Qaeda-linked al-Shabaab movement.
CNN reported in September last year that Liby had been seen in the Libyan capital, Tripoli. It quoted Western intelligence sources as saying there was concern that he may have been tasked with establishing an al-Qaeda network in Libya.
That CNN report quoted counterterrorism analysts as saying that Liby may not have been apprehended then because of the delicate security situation in much of the country, where former jihadists hold sway. It quoted one intelligence source as saying that Liby appeared to have arrived in Libya in the spring of 2011, during the country's civil war.
The Pentagon confirmed US military personnel had been involved in an operation against what it called "a known al-Shabaab terrorist", in Somalia, but gave no more details. One US official, speaking to Reuters on condition of anonymity, said the al-Shabaab leader targeted in the operation was neither captured nor killed.
US officials did not identify the target. They said US forces, trying to avoid civilian casualties, disengaged after inflicting some al-Shabaab casualties.
They said no US personnel were wounded or killed in the operation, which one US source said was carried out by a Navy Seal team.... Read the full, comprehensive news article and discuss at Mail & GuardianSimilar Stories