Tehran, November 14: A top Al-Qaeda terrorist was killed in Iran by Israeli operatives at the behest of the United States, according to The New York Times. Abdullah Ahmed Abdullah alias Abu Muhammad al-Masri was gunned down by two bike-borne men in the streets of Tehran on August 7, the newspaper said. He was said to be the brain behind 1998 bombings at two US embassies in Africa. Bah Ag Moussa, Al-Qaeda Military Leader in Mali, Killed by French Forces.
Masri was seen as an apparent successor of Al-Qaeda chief Ayman al-Zawahiri. According to the newspaper, the killing of Masri was kept secret until now. Notably, Al-Qaeda has not confirmed the death of the Egyptian-born terrorist. Iranian officials have covered it up and no government has publicly claimed responsibility for killing Masri, The New York Times said. Al-Qaeda Has Agreed to Conceal Presence in Afghanistan Till US Maintains Troops: Expert.
Along with Masri, Israeli operatives killed his daughter, Miriam, the widow of Osama bin Laden’s son Hamza bin Laden. Masri had been in Iran's "custody" since 2003 but had been roaming freely in Tehran since 2015, the newspaper cited unnamed US intelligence officials as saying. Shia-ruled Iran and Al-Qaeda, an outfit of Sunni militants, have long been enemies. It remains unclear if Masri's death has had any impact on the terror organisation's activities.