President TrumpDonald John TrumpDemocrats request testimony from Trump’s former Russia adviser Trump adviser: ‘He should stop saying things that are untrue’ US moves British ISIS suspects from Syria amid Turkish invasion MORE on Thursday confirmed that senior al Qaeda bomb-maker Ibrahim al-Asiri was killed in a U.S. strike in Yemen two years ago.
Trump said the bomb-maker’s death in a U.S. counterterrorism operation “significantly handicapped al-Qa’ida in the Arabian Peninsula.”
“This will confirm for the first time that Ibrahim al-Asiri, a senior al-Qa’ida bomb maker and terrorist coordinator, was killed two years ago in a United States counterterrorism operation in Yemen,” Trump said in a statement.
Al-Asiri, one of the top U.S. militant targets, built explosives used in the failed 2009 Christmas Day bombing plot to take down an airplane over Detroit. He also built devices used in a disrupted plot to bomb U.S.-bound cargo jets by hiding the devices in printer cartridges in 2010.
“He also built an explosive device intended to be used against a passenger aircraft in 2012, and the device used in the attempted assassination of the former Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia,” Trump said.
Yemeni officials said in August 2018 that al-Asiri had been killed in a U.S. air strike, but Trump’s announcement marks the first U.S. confirmation. A United Nations report issued in August 2018 also said that al-Siri may have been killed during the latter half of 2017.
“The United States will continue to hunt down terrorists like al-Asiri until they no longer pose a threat to our great Nation,” Trump said.