Top Al Qaeda Leader Confirmed Dead in US Airstrike

The Department of Defense confirmed Saturday that a March 19 US airstrike in Paktika Province, Afghanistan, killed high-ranking al Qaeda leader Qari Yasin. A native of Pakistan, Yasin helped plan a September 2008 bombing of the Marriott Hotel in Islamabad that killed dozens, including Maj. Rodolfo Rodriguez and Navy Third Class Petty Officer Matthew O’Bryant, as well as a 2009 attack on the bus carrying the Sri Lankan cricket team in Lahore. “The death of Qari Yasin is evidence that terrorists who defame Islam and deliberately target innocent people will not escape justice,” said Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis, according to a DOD press release.