Pentagon says Khorasan leader killed in Syria airstrike

Updated 18 October 2015
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Pentagon says Khorasan leader killed in Syria airstrike

WASHINGTON: An air strike by the US-led coalition has killed Sanafi Al-Nasr, leader of an Al-Qaeda offshoot called the Khorasan Group, a Pentagon spokesman said on Sunday.
The Pentagon said Al-Nasr organized routes for new recruits to travel from Pakistan to Syria through Turkey and played a significant role in the group’s finances. He was killed in an air strike on Thursday in northwest Syria, it said.
“Al-Nasr was a longtime jihadist experienced in funneling money and fighters for Al-Qaeda. He moved funds from donors in the Gulf region into Iraq and then to Al-Qaeda leaders from Pakistan to Syria,” the Pentagon spokesman said in a statement.
Al-Nasr worked for Al-Qaeda’s Iran-based network before taking charge of the militant group’s finances in 2012 and moving to Syria in 2013, the Pentagon said. He was the fifth senior Khorasan Group leader killed in the last four months, it said.
“This operation deals a significant blow to the Khorasan Group’s plans to attack the United States and our allies, and once again proves that those who seek to do us harm are not beyond our reach,” Secretary of Defense Ash Carter said in a statement.


Gulf Arab states should be party to proposed Iran treaty talks - UAE official

Updated 38 min 25 sec ago
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Gulf Arab states should be party to proposed Iran treaty talks - UAE official

CAIRO: Washington’s Gulf Arab allies should be included in proposed treaty negotiations with Iran over its ballistic missile program and regional behavior, a senior Emiriati official said on Thursday.
Brian Hook, US special envoy for Iran, said on Wednesday the United States is seeking to negotiate a treaty with Iran to include Tehran’s ballistic missiles and its regional behavior.
Iran has rejected US attempts to hold high-level talks since President Donald Trump tore up a nuclear deal between Tehran and six world powers earlier this year.
Anwar Gargash, United Arab Emirates Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, described Hook’s comments as “important.”
“It is essential that the Gulf Arab states be a party to the proposed negotiations. It is prudent for Tehran to avoid sanctions and to take these proposals seriously,” he tweeted.
The UAE, Saudi Arabia and Bahrain swiftly backed Trump’s decision in May to withdraw from the nuclear accord and reimpose sanctions on Tehran.
The Gulf Arab states were not party to the nuclear accord, and while they were consulted by Western powers during the talks that led up to it, they played no direct role in those negotiations.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo listed a dozen demands in May that he said could make up a new agreement, although Hook referred to a treaty, which would have to be approved by the US Senate.