A senior official of the Joe Biden administration has revealed details of the planning behind the United States’ execution of al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri, CNN reports. The operation, which was carried out by what US officials describe as “a precise tailored airstrike” in a Kabul safehouse where al-Zawahiri was hiding, seemingly did not kill any civilians.

al-Zawahiri became al-Quaeda chief post the death of Osama bin Laden, and was among the chief masterminds behind the 9/11 terror attacks.

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The official said that Biden himself wanted to understand where the terrorist leader was exactly hiding before giving the drone strike a green light. Intelligence officials had also placed a model of the safehouse in the White House Situation Room for Biden to scrutinize. The US President sought specifications of the building’s construction, how the operation could be affected by weather, and other such minute details.

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While security personnel planned the attack, the federal government’s lawyers were busy laying its legal framework. 

The CNN report suggests that US intelligence officials were aware for quite some time that the terrorist leader had taken shelter in the Afghan capital along with members of his family. A briefing was organized on July 1 with CIA Director Bill Burns, Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines, national security adviser Jake Sullivan and his deputy Jon Finer, and Homeland Security Adviser Liz Sherwood Randall.

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The US government official who revealed details of the operation also told CNN that Biden himself was “deeply engaged in the briefing and immersed in the intelligence”, and wanted to know the ins and outs of every piece of information, including the source from which the same was obtained.

The mission was successfully carried out at 6:18 AM local time. Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid has condemned the attack, saying that the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan”strongly condemns this attack on any pretext and calls it a clear violation of international principles and the Doha Agreement”. The United States is of the opinion that the Talibans themselves flouted the Doha agreement by allowing Zawahiri to hide in Afghanistan.