The US carried out a drone hit on a residence in Kabul over the weekend which resulted in killing Al-Qaeda’s chief Ayman Al-Zawahiri, according to the Taliban’s main spokesperson on Monday, news agency Reuters reported.
In a statement, Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid said the incident occurred on Sunday and blasted it as a violation of “international principals” and the 2020 agreement on US military departure.
“The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan strongly condemns this attack on any pretext and calls it is a clear violation of international principles and the Doha Agreement,” reads the statement issued by the Taliban.
په کابل ښار د ډرون برید په اړه د اسلامي امارت د ویاند څرګندونيhttps://t.co/6hTyML1yXP pic.twitter.com/TpWYvvcT2v
— Zabihullah (..ذبـــــیح الله م ) (@Zabehulah_M33) August 1, 2022
“Such actions are a repetition of the failed experiences of the past 20 years and are against the interests of the United States of America, Afghanistan and the region. Repeating such actions will damage the available opportunities,” the statement further reads.
However, US authorities insisted that the operation was legitimate, BBC reported.
The Taliban committed in a 2020 peace pact with the US not to allow al-Qaeda or any other extremist group to operate in areas under their control.
The Taliban and al-Qaeda, on the other hand, have long been partners, and US sources claimed the Taliban were aware of Zawahiri’s presence in Kabul.
Biden in his televised speech said that Afghanistan will never again be a refuge for terrorists.
Who Was Ayman Al-Zawahiri?
Ayman al-Zawahiri was an ideological brains behind al Qaeda’s operations.
He was an Egyptian doctor who was imprisoned in the 1980s for his involvement in militant Islam. After his release, he fled the country and got active in violent international jihadist activities.
He eventually relocated in Afghanistan and formed forces with Osama Bin Laden, a wealthy Saudi. They declared war on the United States and coordinated the September 11, 2001 assaults.
It took the US a decade to track down and assassinate Bin Laden. Following that, Zawahiri gained leadership of al-Qaeda, although he remained a distant and insignificant figure, only delivering messages on occasion.
(With Inputs From Agencies)