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US officials: Al-Qaida's No. 2 killed in Pakistan

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U.S. and Pakistani officials said Saturday that al-Qaida's second-in-command, Atiyah Abd al-Rahman, has been killed in Pakistan, delivering another big blow to a terrorist group that the U.S. believes to be on the verge of defeat.

 

Al-Rahman was killed Monday in the lawless Pakistani tribal region of Waziristan, according to a senior administration official who insisted on anonymity to discuss intelligence issues.

 

A Pakistani intelligence official said al-Rahman died in a U.S. missile strike in Machi Khel village in North Waziristan on Monday.

 

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/44298750/ns/world_news-south_and_central_asia/#.TlsKt6iSFV8

 

However, earlier today some say there are doubts (From Pakistani officials) saying he's NOT dead. Thoughts?

 

http://www.dawn.com/2011/08/28/pakistani-officials-doubt-al-qaeda-operative-dead.html

 

However, local officials in the region told AFP last week that a US drone strike in North Waziristan on that date had killed at least four militants. It was not clear if the two incidents were connected.

 

A senior Pakistani security official in Peshawar told AFP: “We have checked this news report with informers and have worked on it. I doubt the authenticity of this news.”

 

Another security official in Miramshah, the main town in North Waziristan, said he had received no information on the killing.

 

“For me it is just a rumour. Frankly speaking, we are even not aware that a man with this name is working as deputy chief of al Qaeda,” he added.

 

The officials said the remote, mountainous area, just four kilometres from the Afghan border, is inaccessible.

 

“In such cases we rely on information sent from informers. We have not received any type of such a report,” the security official in Mir Ali town, North Waziristan, told AFP.

 

An Afghan Taliban commander in Pakistan’s northwestern tribal region who is in regular contact with al Qaeda described the news report as fake.

 

“It is a fake story. It’s not true,” he told AFP from an undisclosed location.

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