| 24 February 2024, Saturday |

US places bounty on Al Qaeda chief in North Africa

The US on Wednesday placed a bounty of up to $7 million on the leader of Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, the organisation’s North African branch.

The State Department’s Rewards for Justice programme announced that it would offer the money “for information leading to the location or identification of Abu Ubaydah Yusef AL- Anabi who now leads the group.

Al Anabi, an Algerian citizen, had led Aqim’s media and propaganda operations but became the leader of the group last year after French troops killed his predecessor, Abdelmalek Droukdel, in Mali.

The US imposed sanctions on Al Anabi in 2015, as did the UN in 2016.

While most of the group’s fighters are engaged in ground combat in Mali, he and many of the organisation’s leaders are thought to be based in Algeria.

Washington first designated Aqim’s predecessor organisation, the Salafist Group for Preaching and Combat, a terrorist entity in 2001.

The group rebranded and pledged allegiance to Al Qaeda’s global network in 2006. According to The National.