Did al-Qaida conference call lead to closure of US embassies in Mideast?

Daily Beast reports US intel services hacked conversation between more than 20 al-Qaida heads.

August 7, 2013 17:07
Al-Qaida's new leader, Egyptian Ayman al-Zawahiri.

Al-Qaida's new leader, Egyptian Ayman al-Zawahiri 370. (photo credit: REUTERS)

A new report in the Daily Beast claims that the terror alert that led to the closure of the American embassies around the Middle East was brought about by an al-Qaida phone conversation between more than 20 senior members of al-Qaida.

The online news outlet quotes US officials as saying that the call "included the leaders or representatives of the top leadership of al-Qaida and its affiliates calling in from different locations."

According to the report, the leadership of the terror group behind the September 11 attacks and many others since "had assumed the conference calls, which give [al-Qaida leader Ayman al-]Zawahiri the ability to manage his organization from a remote location, were secure".

Hacking into the conference call, the report says, allowed the US intelligence services to uncover the plot.

The report also quotes a US intelligence official as saying that the dozens of terror leaders on the line included "representatives of aspiring al-Qaida affiliates such as al-Qaida in the Sinai Peninsula."

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