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Kerry: US Africa Raids Show Al-Qaida 'Can Run, But Can't Hide'

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry says two U.S. raids on al-Qaida targets in Africa show the United States will, as he put it, "never stop in its effort to hold those accountable who conduct acts of terror."

Speaking Sunday on a visit to Indonesia for a regional summit, the top U.S. diplomat also said al-Qaida militants "can run, but they can't hide."

The U.S. Defense Department said U.S. special forces detained a senior al-Qaida operative at a "secure location" outside Libya after seizing him inside the north African nation on Saturday.

In a statement, the Pentagon said President Barack Obama approved what it called the "successful capture" of Abu Anas al Libi. It said no Americans were injured in the raid.

A U.S. court has charged Libi with involvement in the 1998 bombings of U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania. The attacks killed more than 250 people and wounded thousands. Libyan sources told Western news agencies that Libi, thought to be 49, was snatched on a street in Tripoli on Saturday morning.

Hours earlier, U.S. special forces also raided a seaside base of Somalia's al-Qaida affiliate al-Shabab. U.S. officials said several Shabab militants were killed in a gun battle in the town of Barawe, but the U.S. forces retreated unharmed before capturing a Shabab leader whom they were targeting.



Shabab members confirmed that they resisted the U.S. attack on Barawe.

One U.S. official told the New York Times that Washington planned the Somalia operation a week and a half ago in response to a Shabab assault on Westerners in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi. That assault on the Westgate shopping mall killed more than 60 people last month.

The Libyan government issued a statement saying it has asked the United States for a clarification about the operation to capture al Libi. Tripoli expressed hope that its "strategic relationship" with Washington will "not be damaged" by the incident.

The United States was part of a NATO coalition that helped to bring the Libyan government to power in 2011 by supporting its fighters as they toppled longtime Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi.

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