US says key plotter in USS Cole attack may have been killed in Yemen

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The 2000 bombing of the USS Cole killed 2017/ (AFP)
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Jamal Al-Badawi was targeted by a US airstrike in Yemen. (FBI)
Updated 05 January 2019

US says key plotter in USS Cole attack may have been killed in Yemen

  • One of the main plotters behind the 2000 bombing of the USS Cole may have been killed in Yemen
  • US forces conducted a precision strike Jan. 1 in Marib, targeting Jamal Al-Badawi

WASHINGTON: One of the main plotters behind the 2000 bombing of the USS Cole that left 17 American servicemen dead may have been killed in Yemen, the American military said Friday.
“US forces conducted a precision strike Jan. 1 in the Marib (governorate), Yemen, targeting Jamal Al-Badawi, a legacy Al-Qaeda operative in Yemen involved in the USS Cole bombing,” said Captain Bill Urban, a spokesman for US Central Command.
“US forces are still assessing the results of the strike following a deliberate process to confirm his death.”
A rubber boat loaded with explosives blew up as it rounded the bow of the guided-missile destroyer, which had just pulled into Aden for a five- to six-hour refueling stop, on October 12, 2000.
Seventeen American sailors were killed as well as the two perpetrators of the attack that was claimed by Al-Qaeda, in an early success for the terror group and its founder Osama Bin Laden.
The chief suspect Abdel Rahim Al-Nashiri is being held in Guantanamo Bay.
Badawi was indicted by a federal grand jury in 2003 and charged with 50 counts of various terrorism offenses, including murder of US nationals and murder of US military personnel.
Apart from his alleged role in the USS Cole attack, in which he was said to have supplied boats and explosives, he is also charged with attempting with co-conspirators to attack a US Navy vessel in January 2000.
The FBI had placed Badawi on its most wanted list, offering a $5 million reward for information leading to his capture.
According to the agency, he was captured by Yemeni authorities in connection with the attack but escaped from prison in April 2003. He was recaptured in March 2004, but again escaped in February 2006.


Syria Kurds hand over four Daesh-linked children to Germany

Updated 19 August 2019

Syria Kurds hand over four Daesh-linked children to Germany

  • They included a boy and two sisters who had lost both parents, and a fatherless girl infant
  • A spokeswoman for the German foreign ministry confirmed the handover to staff from its consulate

SIMALKA CROSSING: The Kurdish authorities in northeast Syria on Monday handed over four children linked with the Daesh group to Germany, their first such repatriation to the European country, an official said.
“The autonomous region handed over four children from Daesh families to a delegation from Germany,” said Fanar Kaeet, a foreign affairs official with the Kurdish authorities.
They included a boy and two sisters who had lost both parents, and a fatherless girl infant who was repatriated for health reasons, Kurdish authorities said.
All are under 10 years old, they said.
A spokeswoman for the German foreign ministry confirmed the handover to staff from its consulate in neighboring Iraqi Kurdistan at the Simalka border crossing.
“I can confirm that four children who were in custody in northern Syria were able to leave Syria,” she said.
“The children were received on the Iraqi-Syrian border by staff of the consulate in Irbil and will be given to family members,” the spokeswoman said.
“From there, the children and their family members will, we believe, travel to Germany.”
Syria’s Kurds have spearheaded the US-backed fight against Daesh in Syria, and in March expelled the extremists from their last patch of territory in the war-torn country’s far east.
Even as they fight remaining sleeper cells, thousands of alleged Daesh fighters and family members are being held in their custody.
These include hundreds of suspected foreign fighters in their jails, and thousands of their alleged family members in overcrowded camps.
Western countries have been largely reluctant to repatriate their nationals.
But France and Belgium have brought a handful of orphans home, while the United States last year repatriated a woman with her four children.
Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan and Kosovo have repatriated dozens of women and children.
Daesh overran large parts of Syria and Iraq in 2014, proclaiming a “caliphate” there, but offensives in both countries have seen them lose that territory.
A dozen children of alleged jihadist fighters have been repatriated from Iraq to Germany since March.