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."

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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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