Afghanistan’s spy agency said on Tuesday that the chief of Al Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent, Asim Omar, was killed in a joint raid by United States and Afghanistan forces on a Taliban compound in the Musa Qala district of Helmand province on September 23. The India-born Omar had been the chief of Al Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent since its formation in 2014, the Hindustan Times reported.
The National Directorate of Security also tweeted that Omar, a Pakistani citizen, was killed along with six other members of Al Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent, most of them Pakistanis. “Among them was Raihan, Omar’s courier to [Al Qaeda chief] Ayman al-Zawahiri,” the spy agency added. “They had been embedded inside the Taliban compound in the Taliban stronghold of Musa Qala.”
The US-Afghan joint raid was part of a lengthy operation on the night of September 22 and 23, AFP reported. The US had provided air support for the operation. Afghan authorities had said that they would investigate claims that 40 civilians, including children, had been killed in an air strike conducted during the operation.
The United States has reached a deal with the Taliban to withdraw its troops from Afghanistan, provided that the insurgents abide by security guarantees and cut all ties with Al Qaeda.
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