A man puts off a fire near damaged buildings after an airstrike in the rebel-held town of Turmanin, in Idlib Governorate near the Syrian-Turkish border, Syria April 6, 2016. REUTERS/Ammar Abdullah
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A senior Egyptian al-Qaida figure fighting in Syria was killed in a U.S. drone strike this week, the latest to be killed in such attacks in Syria, a Syrian opposition activist group and relatives said Friday.The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said Rifai Ahmad Taha was killed in a strike Tuesday in the northwestern Idlib province.Before joining al-Qaida, Taha was a top figure in Egypt's notorious militant group Gamaa Islamiya, which massacred 58 foreign tourists in the ancient Egyptian city of Luxor in 1997 . The Observatory's chief Rami Abdurrahman said several al-Qaida members, including Taha, were killed in Tuesday's strike. On Wednesday, Syria's al-Qaida branch known as the Nusra Front confirmed the death of Abu Firas al-Souri, a senior figure in the group, in a U.S. airstrike that also took place in Idlib province.In the early 1980s Taha, spent five years in jail after the 1981 assassination of Egyptian President Anwar Sadat by Muslim extremists.
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