Top Islamist Mokhtar Belmokhtar killed in US strike

A top Islamist militant who ordered a deadly attack on an Algerian gas plant two years ago has been killed in a US air strike in Libya, officials say, the BBC reports.

Mokhtar Belmokhtar was killed in the eastern city of Ajdabiya, a statement from Libya’s government said.

The US says Belmokhtar was targeted and the strike was successful, but it is assessing the operation’s results and would give details “as appropriate”.

Mokhtar Belmokhtar’s death has been reported many times in the past.

Born in Algeria, Belmokhtar was a former senior figure in al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), but left to form his own militia.

He gained notoriety with the attack on the In Amenas gas plant in Algeria in 2013, when about 800 people were taken hostage and 40 killed, most of them foreigners, including six Britons and three Americans.

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