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Archive for Sunday, February 12, 2006

President: Attack killed al-Qaida No. 2 relative

February 12, 2006

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— A U.S. missile strike on a Pakistani village last month killed a relative of al-Qaida's No. 2 leader and a terror suspect wanted by America, Pakistan's leader said Saturday, breaking weeks of silence about the identities of the men.

The nighttime attack outraged Pakistanis, who complained it violated the nation's sovereignty.

Until now, President Gen. Pervez Musharraf had only said "foreigners" died in the Jan. 13 strike in the northwestern town of Bajur. But he provided more details Saturday while visiting northwestern Pakistan, though he did not name the dead terror suspects.

The Pakistani president added that al-Zawahri - al-Qaida's No. 2 leader - was also expected to be in the town, where the suspects were meeting for a dinner. But Pakistani officials have said al-Zawahri skipped the event and instead sent his deputies.

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