A US airstrike Monday in Afghanistan killed family members of a top deputy to suspected terror leader Osama bin Laden, according to Al Jazeera satellite channel.
A local military commander, Haji Mohammad Zaman, had earlier said bin Laden's top deputy, Ayman al-Zawahri, an Egyptian, was wounded in the US air raid and his treasurer, Ali Mahmud, was killed, according to AFP.
But US officials told NBC News they had no evidence Zawahri was killed or injured, but said they believed some of his immediate family -- is wife, a son and three daughters -- were killed.
And a source speaking to the station confirmed the death of Zawahiri’s three daughters and wife, among the families of a number of Al Qaeda members, but denied categorically that the head of the family himself was hurt or killed.
Many consider Zawahri, a doctor who founded the Egyptian Islamic Jihad, to be the real brains behind Al Qaeda, whose military commander Mohammad Atef was killed in an air strike near Kabul last month, said the agency.
Along with bin Laden, Zawahri and Atef were considered the architects of the September 11 terror attacks that killed some 3,500 people in the United States and sparked the US-led Afghan campaign -- Albawaba.com
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