Senate Intel Chairman Burr Statement on Strikes Targeting Senior Al-Qaeda Leaders

WASHINGTON — Today, Senator Richard Burr (R-NC), Chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, made the follow statement on Department of Defense reports that precision strikes have targeted senior Al-Qaeda leaders, Faruq al-Qatani and Bilal al-Utabi, in Afghanistan:

“I'm pleased by reports that the Department of Defense removed from the battlefield Faruq al-Qatani and Bilal al-Utabi, two of al-Qaeda's most senior leaders in Afghanistan?.  If confirmed, the loss of these senior external operations plotters will degrade core al-Qaeda's ability to re-establish a safe haven in Afghanistan and remove a threat to U.S. personnel in Afghanistan and Americans around the world.  I appreciate the Administration’s use of the intelligence and military resources needed to successfully locate, identify, and target these extremists in this strike.”