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Treasury Department designates al-Qaida bombmaker for sanctions

June 6, 2013 at 3:21 PM

WASHINGTON, June 6 (UPI) -- Senior al-Qaida bomb-maker Abd-al-Hamid al-Masli has been targeted for sanctions, the U.S. Treasury Department said Thursday.

"Al-Qaida continues to employ IEDs [improvised explosive devices] as the weapon of choice to kill and maim U.S. and coalition Forces as well as countless civilians," Undersecretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence David S. Cohen said in announcing al-Masli was designated. "The U.S. is determined to disrupt and dismantle these IED networks through all means available, including targeted sanctions."

In 2012, more than 16,000 IED attacks were carried out in Afghanistan, the Treasury Department said in a release. The nearly 4,000 IED attacks so far in 2013 caused 65 percent of U.S. combat casualties.

Al-Masli leads an al-Qaida electronics and explosives workshop in Pakistan, which is responsible for producing IED components for the organization's senior leadership, the Treasury Department said. From 2011 through 2012, al-Masli's workshop provided al-Qaida paramilitary brigades in Afghanistan with timers, circuits, mines and remote control devices for use in IEDs. He also instructed al-Qaida recruits on how to build detonators and, as of 2009, was in charge of IED component construction at the electronics workshop.

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