Islamabad: Harakat-ul-Jihad-Islami (HUJI) has released a photograph that is purported to be of Ilyas Kashmiri after his death. The photograph of the top Al Qaeda military leader and HUJI's statement has been republished with the permission of the SITE Intelligence Group.
Kashmiri was the commander of "Brigade 313" of HUJI, which formed a close relationship with Al Qaeda.
He was killed in an American drone strike in the tribal territory of South Waziristan.
Kashmiri is known to have been blinded in one eye after fighting the Soviets in Afghanistan during the 1980s. The picture shows the face of a clean-shaven man. Kashmiri is well-known for photographs with his full beard and aviator sunglasses. One eye does appear to have been blinded, however it is difficult to determine if the injury was the result of an injury years ago or an injury sustained in a predator strike.
Translation of the statement released by HUJI on Kashmiri's death:
"On behalf of Harkat Jihad al-Islami 313 Brigade we confirm the fact that our leader and Commander-in-chief Mohammad Ilyas Kashmiri, along with other companions, have been martyred in an American drone attack at 11:15 pm on June 3, 2011 and Insha Allah (God willing) the present pharaoh America will see our full revenge very soon. Our only target is America."
Story First Published: June 06, 2011 10:44 IST