by Harrison Arubu
New York – The United States has placed a bounty of up to 10 million dollars on the heads of two Al Qaeda leaders in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP).
The Department of State announced the offer in a statement on Thursday under its Rewards for Justice (RFJ) Programme.
It identified the wanted persons as Sa’ad bin Atef al-Awlaki, the “emir of Shabwah, a province in Yemen”, and Ibrahim Ahmed Mahmoud al-Qosi, one of his aides.
“RFJ is offering up to $6 million for information leading to the identification or location of Sa’ad bin Atef al-Awlakin, and up to $4 million for information leading to the identification or location of Ibrahim Ahmed Mahmoud al-Qosi.
“Al-Awlaki has publicly called for attacks against the United States and our allies.
“Al-Qosi, also known as Sheikh Khubayb al-Sudani and Mohammad Salah Ahmad, is part of the leadership team that assists the current “emir” of AQAP.
“Since 2015, he has appeared in AQAP recruiting materials and encouraged lone wolf attacks against the United States in online propaganda.
“Al-Qosi was born in Sudan. He joined AQAP in 2014, but has been active in al-Qa’ida for decades and worked directly for Usama bin Laden for many years,” the statement said.
It added that al-Qosi was captured in Pakistan in December, 2001, and was transfered to the U.S. detention facility in Guantanamo Bay.
According to the government, al-Qosi appeared before a military commission in 2010, and pleaded guilty to conspiring with al-Qa’ida and providing material support to terrorism.
It said al-Qosi was released and returned to Sudan in 2012 pursuant to a pretrial agreement.