The New York Times reported on Friday that Israeli operatives assassinated Abdullah Ahmed Abdullah, known as Abu Muhammad al-Masri, as he drove his car on the streets of Tehran in August.
REPORT: Al Qaeda Leader Killed By Mossad at Behest of US
Citing unnamed US officials, the NYT reported that on August 7, al-Masri was driving with his daughter near his home in the upscale Pasdaran district of Tehran when a motorcycle with two riders pulled up alongside his car and opened fire with a silenced handgun, shooting five bullets. Four bullets hit the target and a fifth hit a nearby vehicle. His daughter, Miriam, the widow of Osama bin Laden’s son Hamza bin Laden, was also killed in the shooting. She was involved in terrorist activities and was assigned to a leadership position in al-Qaeda.
According to the anonymous American intelligence source, the assassination was carried out by gunmen from the Mossad’s “bayonet” unit at the behest of the US government. A report by Channel 13 in Israel claimed that the hit was carried out by “foreign agents activated by Israel.”
Al-Masri was on the FBI’s Most Wanted List as the second-highest leader in Al Qaeda terrorist organization and a $10 million reward was offered for information leading to his capture. He allegedly masterminded the 1998 attacks on American embassies in Africa in which more than 200 people were killed and more than 4,000 wounded in nearly simultaneous truck bomb explosions at the US Embassy in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, and the US Embassy in Nairobi, Kenya. His assassination was on the 22nd anniversary of the attacks. Israel alleges that al Masri oversaw the 2002 suicide bombing of an Israeli-owned hotel in Mombasa, Kenya in which 13 were killed, including three Israelis including two children, and 80 people were injured.
Israel’s Channel 12 News reported Saturday night that “Al-Masri had recently begun planning attacks against Israelis and Jewish targets in the world.”
Linking Iran to Al Qaeda
His presence in Iran was enigmatic as the Shiite country is an enemy of the Sunni Al Qaeda and they have fought in Iraq and other conflicts. Al Masri was reported to be in Iranian custody since 2003 but is known to have been roaming freely in the country since at least 2015.
Both Israel and the US refused to comment on the report.
Iran released an official statement, denying that Al Masri was in Iran. The spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Saeed Khatibzadeh denied the story.
“In order to shirk responsibility for the criminal activities of that group (al-Qaeda) and the other terrorist groups in the region, Washington and Tel Aviv try every now and then to draw a link between Iran and such groups through falsification and the leakage of fabricated information to the media,” Khatibzadeh said to the press.
“Although the US has not refrained from levelling any false accusation against the Islamic Republic of Iran in the past, such approach has become a permanent modus operandi at the current US administration, as the White House has attempted to make advances in implementing its Iranophobia plot by repeating such allegations,” the spokesman added.
“Such accusations are undoubtedly part of the full-fledged economic, intelligence and psychological war against the Iranian people, and the media should not act as a tribune for spreading the White House’s purposeful lies about Iran,” the Foreign Ministry’s spokesperson concluded