Peshawar, Oct. 3 (ANI): In the wake of Uzbek Al Qaeda leader Tahir Yuldashev's reported death in a drone strike, the terrorist outfit has named a relatively unknown militant, Usman Jan, as his successor.
According to Pak military sources, Yuldashev, the leader of the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, was killed by a US missile in August in Pakistan's South Waziristan region.
However, the Pak-Taliban has categorically denied the killing of Yaldashev in the drone attack.
"Qari Tahir Yaldashev is alive and safe. Reports about his death in a drone attack are baseless," The Dawn quoted Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan spokesman Qari Hussain, as saying.
Pakistani intelligence officials had claimed that Yaldashev had lost one leg and one arm in the attack and was rushed to a private hospital in Zhob district of Balochistan where he died on Oct 1.
A close ally of the Taliban and al Qaeda, Yuldashev was leading an underground operation against the communist government of Uzbekistan before and after the break-up of the Soviet Union.
He later fled to for the safety of Taliban-ruled Afghanistan and fought on the Taliban side in Afghanistan's civil war.
He fled to Waziristan after US-led forced toppled the Taliban in late 2001.
In March 2004, Pakistani forces surrounded his base, but he escaped while his fighters mounted a fierce defence. (ANI)