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FBI: A 'Most Wanted Terrorist' Killed in Philippines

  • VOA News

The raid in which Zulkifli bin Hir was killed also left 44 police commandos dead, and a Philippine senate panel held President Benigno Aquino responsible for the bungled operation. Above, protesters march toward the presidential palace in Manila, March 20, 2015.

The raid in which Zulkifli bin Hir was killed also left 44 police commandos dead, and a Philippine senate panel held President Benigno Aquino responsible for the bungled operation. Above, protesters march toward the presidential palace in Manila, March 20, 2015.

The U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation on Wednesday confirmed that one of its "most wanted terrorists" was killed during a police raid in the Philippines in January.

Zulkifli bin Hir was a leading member of the Islamist militant group Jemaah Islamiyah, which is responsible for numerous bombing attacks in the Philippines.

The group Jemaah Islamiyah is believed to be linked to al-Qaida and has a long track record of attacks in Indonesia, including the deadly 2002 bombing of a nightclub in Bali.

The FBI said DNA taken from the scene of the raid matched that of bin Hir's relatives. The raid that killed the terrorist also killed 44 police commandos.

The U.S. State Department had offered $5 million for the arrest of bin Hir. Three years ago, the Philippine military reported that he had died in an airstrike, but he surfaced again last year in Mindanao under protection of a Moro Islamic Liberation Front splinter group.

In a statement, David Bowdich, assistant director in charge at the FBI Los Angeles field office, said the agency had taken bin Hir off its most-wanted-terrorists list and thanked the Philippine police.

"Once again, the men and women of the FBI express sincere condolences to the brave officers of the Special Action Force who lost their lives while attempting to apprehend this dangerous fugitive," Bowdich said.

Some information for this report came from Reuters.

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