US drone kills another al-Qaida commander in Pakistan

Military officials say this is the second al-Qaida leader to be killed by drones in three days.

DERA ISMAIL KHAN, Pakistan — A U.S. drone attack killed a senior al-Qaida commander in Pakistan's northwest Sunday, military intelligence officials said, the second militant leader to be killed in strikes by the unmanned aircraft in three days.

The attack killed Mohammad Ahmed Almansoor and three others in a village close to Miranshah, the main town in North Waziristan, near the Afghan border.

The drone fired missiles at a house with Almansoor inside, destroying two rooms and a car. Four drones were seen flying over the area during the attack, residents and government officials said.

A similar attack Thursday in North Waziristan killed another senior al-Qaida commander, Abu Zaid, who replaced Abu Yahya al-Libi as one of the militant Islamist group's most powerful figures, intelligence sources said. A U.S. drone attack also killed Libi in June.

Unmanned aerial attacks have crushed al-Qaida's network along Pakistan's border with Afghanistan but have drawn trenchant criticism in the two countries.

Al-Qaida has been weakened steadily in Afghanistan and Pakistan since the killing of Osama bin Laden in a raid by U.S. special forces on a Pakistani garrison town in May 2011.

Writing by Randy Fabi

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