WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Pentagon on Friday confirmed the death of the leader of the al-Shabab terror group, Ahmed Abdi Godane, who was the target of a U.S. airstrike Monday in Somalia.
The Pentagon's press secretary, Rear Adm. John Kirby, confirmed the death in a brief written statement.
The White House declared a counterterrorism success.
"Godane's removal is a major symbolic and operational loss to the largest al-Qaida affiliate in Africa and reflects years of painstaking work by our intelligence, military and law enforcement professionals," a White House statement said.
U.S. officials had said after the strike on Monday that U.S. special operations forces using manned and drone aircraft had destroyed an encampment and a vehicle using several Hellfire missiles and laser-guided munitions. But they did not confirm that Godane had been killed until Friday.