One of the militants killed in a US air strike in Libya over the weekend was a “high-ranking” official in al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), the Pentagon said.
The strike, the first against al Qaeda militants in Libya, killed “two terrorists” as part of efforts to deny militants a safe haven in the country’s vast desert.
The military previously acknowledged the weekend strike, but had not said who the target was.
In a statement, the US military said Musa Abu Dawud, the senior al Qaeda militant, trained recruits in Libya to carry out attacks in the region.
“He provided critical logistic support, funding and weapons to AQIM, enabling the terrorist group to threaten and attack US and Western interests in the region,” US Africa Command said.
The Saturday strike hit on the outskirts of Ubari and was carried out in co-ordination with the internationally recognised Government of National Accord in Tripoli.