Ayman al-Zawahri

Al-Qaida confirms deputy leader killed in US strike in Syria

A U.S. airstrike in Syria earlier this week killed the deputy leader of al-Qaida, known as Abu al-Khayr al-Masri, the group confirmed on Thursday. The death brings a significant blow to the terror network and points to the central role Syria has taken in its operations.

Al-Masri, a veteran Egyptian militant, was the deputy of al-Qaida's leader Ayman al-Zawahri, and the organization's senior figure in Syria. He coordinated al-Qaida's work with other militant groups and played a direct role in developing external plots, according to a U.S. counterterrorism official, who was not authorized to discuss the issue and spoke on condition of anonymity.

The first report of his death...