Key Plotter in USS Cole Attack Killed in US Drone Strike

Leroy Wright
January 8, 2019

The militant, said to be an al-Qaeda commander, was on the FBI's most wanted list over the attack on the warship.

USA forces conducted a precision airstrike targeting al-Badawi on January 1 in the Marib governorate, said Capt. Bill Urban, a Central Command spokesperson.

Jamel Ahmed Mohammed Ali al-Badawi, an al-Qaeda operative, is believed to have played a central role in the October 12, 2000 bombing of the USS Cole in which 17 American sailors were killed.

Badawi was killed in the strike, according to United States and Arab media reports.

Jamal Al Badawi, a suspect of the USS Cole destroyer's bombing in 2000 in the Yemeni port of Aden, gestures after an appeal court announced his judgement to 15 years in prison in the final appeal session trial, 26 February 2005.

A USA official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told CNN on Friday that Al-Badawi was struck while driving alone in a vehicle. No collateral damage is now known. Docked in Aden for a routine refueling stop, the guided-missile destroyer was approached by a small boat loaded with explosives, which was then detonated.

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"Jamal al-Badawi was indicted by a federal grand jury in 2003, charged with 50 counts of various terrorism offenses, including murder of US nationals and murder of USA military personnel", the statement said.

This photo provided by the Federal Bureau of Investigation shows Jamal al-Badawi.

There is a five-million dollar reward for information leading to his arrest.

A USA defence official confirmed a "precision strike" had been carried out on Tuesday against Jamal al-Badawi to the east of the Yemeni capital, Sanaa.

He was convicted of plotting and taking part in the bombing in Yemen in 2004 but escaped from prison and, after handing himself in again, was allowed to walk free.

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