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CIA director says Al Qaeda on the run as a leader killed in US drone strike

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J. Scott Applewhite/AP/File

(Read caption) CIA Director Leon Panetta said on Wednesday that US and Pakistani attacks against Al Qaeda in Pakistan have crippled the group and its leadership.

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A daily summary of global reports on security issues.

US intelligence officials said that an Al Qaeda member involved in the attack on a CIA base in Afghanistan in December was killed in an airstrike last week.

The announcement was made after CIA Director Leon Panetta told a newspaper Wednesday that US and Pakistani attacks against Al Qaeda in Pakistan have crippled the group and its leadership.

Agence France-Presse reports that the militant killed by a US unmanned aerial drone attack March 8 was Hussein Al-Yemeni, who specialized in bombs and directing suicide operations. He had played a “key role” in the attack on the CIA base on Dec. 30 that killed seven Americans, according to AFP’s source, a US counterterrorism official.

The US had stepped up drone strikes in Pakistan after the attack on the CIA base, and some intelligence officials had promised to exact vengeance on the planners, reports the Los Angeles Times, which says they appeared “elated” upon confirming Yemeni’s death.

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