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Al-Qaeda sets up anti-US drone cells

04 September 2013, 10:46

Washington - Al-Qaeda's leaders have set up cells of engineers to try to shoot down, disable or hijack US drones, The Washington Post reported late on Tuesday citing top-secret US intelligence documents.

The al-Qaeda leadership is "hoping to exploit the technological vulnerabilities of a weapons system that has inflicted huge losses against the terrorist network," the Post said online.

"Although there is no evidence that al-Qaeda has forced a drone crash or successfully interfered with flight operations, US intelligence officials have closely tracked the group's persistent efforts to develop a counterdrone strategy since 2010," the report said, citing the secret documents.

The al-Qaeda commanders are keen to achieve "a technological breakthrough [that] could curb the US drone campaign, which has killed an estimated 3 000 people over the past decade," the Post reported.

Drone strikes have forced al-Qaeda operatives to limit their movements in Pakistan, Afghanistan, Yemen, Somalia and other places.

They have also taken a toll among civilians in those countries, something that has fuelled anti-US sentiment.


Tags al-qaeda us

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