“A US air strike today in northwest Syria killed senior al-Qaeda leader Abdul Hamid al-Matar. We have no indication of civilian casualties as a result of the attack, which was carried out using an MQ-9 aircraft,” said CENTCOM spokesman Major John Rigsbee, in his release, refers to the MQ-9 Reaper combat drone as quoted from Sputnik, Saturday (10/23/2021).
The attack came two days after a US military base in southern Syria was attacked. Rigsbee did not say whether the US drone strike was carried out in retaliation.
Also read: Missiles hit US military base in Syria
“The death of this senior al-Qaeda leader will disrupt the terrorist organization’s ability to plan further and carry out global attacks that threaten US citizens, our partners, and innocent civilians,” the US Army Major said. Al Arabiya.
US operations against al-Qaeda in Syria have intensified since the collapse of the US-backed Afghan government in August. The US has carried out several other attacks against groups allied to al-Qaeda in Syria in recent weeks.
The move follows Biden’s statement in August outlining the next phase of the war on terror, a conflict that is increasingly taking a backseat as the US grand strategy shifts to a power competition with Russia and China.
“Today the terrorist threat has spread far beyond Afghanistan: al-Shabaab in Somalia, al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQQP), al-Nusra in Syria, ISIS seeks to create a caliphate in Syria and Iraq and establish affiliates in many countries in Africa. and Asia,” Biden said in a televised address two days after the US-backed Afghan government collapsed before the Taliban’s blitzkrieg.