Leading al Qaeda commander Mokhtar Belmokhtar, thought to be behind January's hostage crisis in Algeria, has been killed in Mali, according to Chadian forces. Foreign Secretary William Hague said if true, his death would be a "blow to terrorism".
One of the world's most infamous terrorists is believed to be dead tonight. Chad's armed forces say Mokhtar Belmokhtar was killed by their soldiers in Mali today. He was said to have ordered January's attack on an Algerian gas plant where 37 hostages were killed.
ITV News correspondent Harry Smith has the latest:
A spokesman for the Chadian Army has said on national television their forces have killed Mokhtar Belmokhtar in Mali.
On Saturday, March 2, at noon, Chadian armed forces operating in northern Mali completely destroyed a terrorist base ... The toll included several dead terrorists, including their leader Mokhtar Belmokhtar.
Jihadist Mokhtar Belmokhtar, who Chad officials claim has been killed by their armed forces, allegedly planned the hostage taking of hundreds of foreign workers at a BP co-owned gas facility in Algeria earlier this year.
A spokesman for the Chad Armed Forces says that their soldiers in Mali have killed the leading al Qaeda commander Mokhtar Belmokhtar, according to Reuters. It's understood that he was killed in the north of Mali.