A senior al-Qaida leader has been seriously wounded and is on the run, Pakistan’s military spokesman said Saturday, while claiming that an operation to rid the western border areas of suspected terrorists has been a success.
Recently gathered intelligence and eyewitness accounts indicate that al-Qaida commander Tahir Yuldash was badly wounded and is in hiding, military spokesman Maj. Gen. Shaukat Sultan said. He admitted, though, that Pakistani forces are not close to capturing Yuldash.
“He might have slipped away, he’s on the run,” Sultan said.
Yuldash, also known as Tahir Yuldashev, is the leader of an Uzbek terror group–Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan–which Pakistani officials say has been subsumed by al-Qaida since the Sept. 11 attacks on the United States.
He was previously mentioned as one of two possible “high-value targets” cornered when Pakistan’s military began the sweep of South Waziristan on March 16.