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As the dust settles on Ayman al-Zawahiri’s killing in Kabul, al-Qa’ida are more dangerous than ever

Ivor Roberts


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Osama bin Laden, left, and Ayman al-Zawahiri. Picture by Hamid Mir

Osama bin Laden, left, and Ayman al-Zawahiri. Picture by Hamid Mir

Osama bin Laden, left, and Ayman al-Zawahiri. Picture by Hamid Mir

We should not be lulled into celebratory complacency. A week on from the killing of Ayman al-Zawahiri, al-Qa’ida’s erstwhile leader and operational mastermind, the group is likely to prove a more imminent threat than at any point in the decade of his tenure in charge.

Much attention has focused on al-Zawahiri’s likely successor and current al-Qa’ida military chief Saif al-Adl. He is a younger, bolder and more operationally focused terrorist operative, whose experience as an intelligence and security leader will make him an extremely dangerous emir.


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