Anwar al-Awlaki, a U.S.-born cleric alleged to have links to al Qaeda, was killed in an air strike in Yemen on Friday, Yemeni and U.S. officials said,.
It was not immediately clear if Yemeni forces had carried out the raid or if Awlaki had been killed by a U.S. drone strike. A U.S. drone aircraft targeted but failled to kill Alwaki in May. The United States has stepped up drone strikes in Yemen.
"The terrorist Anwar al-Awlaki has been killed along with some of his companions," the Yemeni Defence Ministry said in a statement texted to journalists, but gave no details.
A senior U.S. official confirmed Awlaki's death, but gave no details. "I can confirm he's dead," the official said.
A Yemeni security official said Awlaki, 40, who is of Yemeni descent, was hit in a morning air raid in the northern al-Jawf province that borders oil giant Saudi Arabia. He accused four people killed with him of being suspected al Qaeda members.
The Yemen embassy in Washington said Awlaki had been killed 8 km (five miles) from the town of Khashef in Jawf province, about 140 km east of Sanaa, at about 9:55 a.m. (0655 GMT).
Yemeni authorities previously and erroneously reported that Awlaki had been killed in 2009.
Last Mod: 30 Eylül 2011, 16:14