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From middle-class doctor to the world’s most wanted: Who was Ayman al-Zawahiri? | World News

Ayman al-Zawahiri, a key force behind the September 11, 2001 attacks in the United States, has spent most of the past 20 years hanging a $25 million bounty.

The bespectacled Egyptian doctor was a leader of al Qaeda later in the era. However, he is perhaps best known for his former role as Number Two in Osamabin His Laden, the charismatic founder of his one of the world’s most notorious and barbaric terrorist organizations.

Zawahiri became head of the group after bin Laden was killed in a US Special Forces raid in Pakistan in 2011.

Al-Qaeda, under his control and with surviving leaders on the run or in hiding from the US, UK and other Western counter-terrorism forces, struggled to make a significant impact, but rival Islamic extremists sect groups, particularly the Islamic State or ISIS, were emerging. , with a smarter approach to social media and engaging more recruits.

Still, Zawahiri, 71, is the most escaped death or arrest since US President George Bush launched the so-called “war on terror” over the weekend following the massacres of al-Qaeda airliners in Washington and New York. He remained a notorious Islamic extremist.

the meaning is His death in CIA drone attack in Kabul To the thousands of American and British spies and Special Forces personnel who have continued to seek him out as part of their mission to destabilize and undermine al-Qaeda and prevent it from posing an international threat again. It will be considered an important moment.

“They will never forget,” US President Joe Biden said in an address to the nation Monday night, confirming the news that Zawahiri had died. announced that he had moved to “downtown Kabul”.

image:
Ayman Al-Zawahiri (right) with Osama bin Laden in November 2001

“Comfortable parenting”

Such a risky move is in stark contrast to the years when Zawahiri has gone to great lengths to hide his whereabouts. This is largely believed to have been accomplished by him in a remote tribal area of ​​Pakistan bordering Afghanistan.

It could indicate that the highly controversial US decision to withdraw troops from Afghanistan in the face of a resurgent Taliban a year ago inadvertently created the conditions to lure Zawahiri out of the shadows. There is even The Taliban have long maintained close ties with al-Qaeda despite pledging to sever ties as part of the US withdrawal deal.

His death in a covert drone attack in Afghanistan was far from a comfortable beginning for Zawahiri.

He was born on June 19, 1951 into a middle-class family in Maadi, a suburb of Cairo. Zawahiri’s father was a professor of pharmacology.

As an academically gifted student, young Zawahiri chose to read medicine at Cairo University. However, he was also politically active and took increasingly extreme views of the Egyptian government. He founded a jihad group with many followers.

Zawahiri, who is also a family man, married a woman named Aza Noir, and the couple had six children, one son and five daughters.

Meeting with Osama bin Laden

According to a profile of Zawahiri by The Washington Post, he began practicing medicine but became involved in visiting refugee camps along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border.

Zawahiri used his medical training to treat the wounds of Afghan mujahideen fighters who were opposing the then Soviet-backed Afghan government.

It was reportedly during this time that he first met Saudi-born Osama bin Laden.

After the murder of the then-President of Egypt in 1981, turmoil erupted in Egypt, and Zawahiri was arrested and detained for three years. During this time he said he was tortured.

https://www.fbi.gov/wanted/wanted_terrorists/ayman-al-zawahiri

After his release, he met bin Laden again, effectively becoming his personal physician and an increasingly trusted ally. His FBI wanted poster, offering a bounty of up to $25 million (£20.4 million) for information on his whereabouts, states that Zawahiri went by many aliases, including doctor and teacher.

Zawahiri is portrayed as a thinker rather than a fighter and is believed to have spent much of the 1990s traveling around the world, including the United States, Bulgaria, Denmark and Sweden, using fake passports in search of new sources of funding. I’m here.

By 1997, he had settled in Jalalabad, a city in southern Afghanistan. The following year, his extremist group merged with bin Laden’s more successful al-Qaeda. It means “base” in Arabic.

Zawahiri is credited with overseeing the planning of the 9/11 attacks and other al Qaeda atrocities. He also reported that he launched unsuccessful attempts by the group to acquire biological and nuclear weapons before being forced to flee by the US-led invasion of Afghanistan.

As bin Laden’s agent, while in hiding, Zawahiri appeared in numerous videos uploaded to al-Qaeda-sympathetic websites and spewed out his terrorist views.

After his boss’s death, however, friction within al-Qaeda and with other Islamist extremist groups made Zawahiri less visible and much less visible.

Still, he remained as high a target for U.S. counter-terrorism forces as ever.

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