Washington: Al-Qaeda's second-in-command Abu Yahya al-Libi has died in a US drone strike, the White House confirmed on Wednesday, with a top Obama aide terming it as a major blow to the this terrorist outfit.

"Al-Libi is dead," White House Press Secretary Jay Carney announced at his daily news conference.

However, he refused to discuss how Libi's life came to an end – both the circumstances and the location of his death.

"I can tell you that our intelligence community has intelligence that leads them believe that al-Qaeda's number two leader is dead," Carney said amidst news reports that al-Libi died in a US drone strike in Pakistan.

"Removing leaders like al-Libi from the top of al-Qaeda is part of the effort of the Obama Administration to defeat and dismantle the terror network," Carney said.

49-year-old Libi, considered the most-prominent figure in al-Qaeda after Ayman al-Zawahiri, carried a reward of USD one million on his head.

Carney said Al-Libi was very much an operational leader, a general manager of the organization and his absence would be a "job hard to fill" and it is very much possible to find a suitable replacement for him in the near future.

"It is a job that is hard to fill. There may not be ... the duration of late that people have held that job... there could be a lot of candidates hoping to fill. So the point is that removing leaders ... from the very top of al-Qaeda is part of an ongoing effort to ultimately disrupt and defeat al-Qaeda," he said.



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