Wednesday, 22 December 2010

Founder of local al-Qaida media arm killed in clashes with Yemeni troops

Source: Xinhua


The Yemen-based al-Qaida wing announced the founder of its Arabic-language media arm was killed in one of the clashes with Yemeni troops over the past few months in a statement posted on jihadist forums on Tuesday.

Nayefbin Mohammed bin Saeed al-Kudari al-Qahtani, a 24-year-old Saudi national who is the founder of the official media arm of the al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) Al-Malahim Foundation, was killed in a gunfight with Yemeni security forces in the past few months.

The statement of AQAP did not specify where al-Qahtani was killed, but said he traveled from Saudi Arabia to Yemen in early 2007 and stayed with some Saudi and Yemeni al-Qaida members in Waila tribe in the northern Yemeni province of Saada.

The AQAP's statement also revealed that al-Qahtani took part in a suicide car bomb attack in the Yemeni northeast province of Marib on July 2, 2007, which killed eight Spanish tourists and two Yemeni drivers.

Shortly after the attack, the al-Qahtani's idea of establishing the group's media Al-Malahim Foundation was approved by the head of al-Qaida in Yemen, Nasir al-Wihayshi.

Yemen, one of the poorest Arab countries, is facing a growing resurgent al-Qaida threat. It has launched a continuing anti-terrorism campaign since 2009, including air raids against al-Qaida militants in several southern and eastern provinces.

The Yemeni government has come under increasing pressure from the International community to turn its focus on fighting al-Qaida within its borders after the AQAP claimed responsibility for two parcel bombs shipped through planes bound for the U.S. in October.

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