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NBC News and news services
updated 5:05 p.m. CT, Thurs., Dec . 10, 2009
A high-ranking al-Qaida figure was killed Thursday in an attack by a drone aircraft in northwest Pakistan, U.S. officials told NBC News.
The officials did not identify who was killed, except to say that it was not al-Qaida’s supreme leader, Osama bin Laden. If the report is confirmed, it would be the first time coalition forces had killed a top al-Qaida figure in almost a year.
The officials said the killing was the result of stepped-up operations targeting al-Qaida leaders in recent weeks.