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Pentagon Announces Death of Former Guantanamo Bay Detainee in Yemen | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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A Navy guard patrols Camp Delta’s detainee recreation yard during the early morning at Guantanamo Bay naval base in a July 7, 2010. Reuters

London – The Pentagon said on Monday that a strike against al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) in Yemen killed a former detainee from the US detention center at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

“We can confirm the death of a former Guantanamo Bay detainee, Yasir al-Silmi,” said Navy Captain Jeff Davis, a Pentagon spokesman.

Davis stated that Silmi had been held at the detention center from 2002, when he was arrested in Pakistan, until 2009.

In a statement, the Pentagon said that he was also known as Mohammed Tahar and was repatriated from Guantanamo Bay in 2009 to Yemen.

Davis added that the United States had carried out more than 40 strikes against AQAP militants over the past five nights and would continue to target it.

On the other hand, Yemen was hit by a fifth consecutive night of suspected US air strikes targeting Qaeda militants in the impoverished nation, a Yemeni security source said Monday.

The United States carried out at least one new air strike on Qaeda in Yemen overnight on Monday and has waged several strikes since Saturday, US officials told Reuters, keeping up the pressure on the militants after starting a new push last week.

For his part, US Ambassador to Yemen Matthew Tueller told Asharq Al-Awsat that Washington is currently carrying out a vigorous campaign on Qaeda and ISIS in Yemen, aiming at destroying these two terrorist organizations that only brought death and destruction to Yemen.

He confirmed that the US war against them is going unabated, adding that his country won’t miss any chance to eradicate terrorism in Yemen.

Washington has escalated its strikes against al-Qaeda in Yemen since the beginning of US President Donald Trump’s presidency. The number of strikes carried out within the past two months was more than those carried out within a whole year before Trump takes over.