The al-Qaeda branch in Yemen has acknowledged that two of its senior leaders were killed in a drone strike earlier this week, Yemeni media reported on Thursday.
In a rare admission, al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) said that Shawki al-Baadani and Nabil al-Dahab had been targeted and killed in intensified drone strikes on Monday.
The terrorist group had in the past refrained from confirming such killings.
AQAP did not specify the location of the attack.
Al-Baadani and al-Dahab were regarded as among the most dangerous al-Qaeda operatives in Yemen.
Al-Baadani was listed as a global terrorist by the United States, which accused him of involvement in an alleged plot to bomb the U.S. embassy in Yemen in 2012.
He was also accused of being the mastermind of a 2012 attack on a military parade that killed some 100 soldiers in Sana’a.
AQAP is believed to be one of al-Qaeda’s most active branches.
The terrorist group has in recent months been the target of strikes believed to be carried out by U.S. drones.
However, Washington has not confirmed involvement in these strikes.