Tags: British | Troops | Kill | Key | Al-Qaida | Leader

British Troops Kill Key Al-Qaida Leader

Monday, 25 September 2006 12:00 AM

BAGHDAD -- British troops in Iraq said on Monday they had killed a senior al Qaeda figure who escaped from a U.S. prison in Afghanistan in 2005.

Omar Faruq was shot dead while resisting arrest during a pre-dawn raid by about 200 British troops in Iraq's second biggest city, Basra, British military spokesman Major Charlie Burbridge said.

Burbridge called him a "very, very significant man", although he was believed to be hiding inside Iraq, not necessarily operating there.

"The individual had been tracked across Iraq and was in hiding in Basra," Burbridge said.

"Two companies (about 200 troops) launched the operation in the early hours of this morning. The troops returned to base without any multinational force casualties."

Faruq, a Kuwaiti citizen who was captured in Indonesia in June, 2002, was described by Washington as the most senior al Qaeda figure in southeast Asia, a key link between Osama bin Laden's followers and Indonesia's Jemaah Islamiah militants.

He was one of four men who escaped from the high-security U.S. detainee centre at Bagram air base north of the Afghan capital, Kabul, in June last year.

Washington did not reveal that he had escaped until six months later, when defence lawyers demanded he be produced as a witness at the trial of an army sergeant accused of abusing prisoners in Bagram. U.S. officials were then forced to reveal that he could not testify because he had escaped.

(c) Reuters 2006. All rights reserved.

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BAGHDAD -- British troops in Iraq said on Monday they had killed a senior al Qaeda figure who escaped from a U.S. prison in Afghanistan in 2005. Omar Faruq was shot dead while resisting arrest during a pre-dawn raid by about 200 British troops in Iraq's second biggest...
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2006-00-25
Monday, 25 September 2006 12:00 AM
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