ISLAMABAD, Pakistan, June 1 (UPI) -- The death of the No. 3 man in al-Qaida in Pakistan is a serious blow to the terrorist cabal, U.S. intelligence officials said.
Al-Qaida in a statement released Monday said Mustafa Abu Yazid was killed.
Al-Qaida didn't reveal the circumstances surrounding his death, though intelligence monitoring groups said several of his family members were killed in the attack, CNN International reports.
Yazid, an Egyptian also known as Saeed al-Masri, was known to be a founder of al-Qaida and led the financial arm of the terrorist group.
U.S. intelligence officials told CNN on condition of anonymity that "this would be a big victory" for the war on terror if the death were confirmed.
Yazid was named by a U.S. panel investigating the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks as a "chief financial manager" for al-Qaida.
In his most recent video message, Yazid claimed responsibility for the December attack on a CIA base in eastern Afghanistan that killed seven intelligence officers and a Jordanian army captain.
The Long War Journal, an online Web site monitoring the region, reports that Yazid was apparently killed in a May 21 strike in North Waziristan in northern Pakistan by a missile fired from a U.S. drone.
He would be one the highest-ranking al-Qaida figured killed by a U.S. drone if his death is confirmed, the Journal added.