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U.S.: Senior al Qaeda leader captured in Afghanistan

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KABUL, Afghanistan (CNN) -- A senior al Qaeda leader in Afghanistan who escaped last year from Bagram prison has been captured, U.S. military sources said Monday.

Abu Nasir al-Qahtani was among six people arrested last Monday during a raid by coalition and Afghan forces in Khost province, the sources said.

A coalition military press release issued at the time of al-Qahtani's arrest described him only as a "known al Qaeda terrorist" and said he was taken into custody along with Saudi and Pakistani nationals.

Al-Qahtani was one of four al Qaeda detainees who escaped from the high-security detention facility at the U.S. base in Bagram in July 2005.

The men later appeared in an al Qaeda video describing their detention and escape.

Al-Qahtani went into the most detail about the escape, even drawing a map of the Bagram prison. He said that after sneaking off the base the four men eventually made contact with the Taliban.

Another of the four escapees, Omar al-Farouq, was killed in late September in Basra, Iraq, by British troops.

A coalition spokesman in Kabul said Monday that grenades, military equipment, armor-piercing rounds and AK-47 assault rifles were found during last week's raid. A camera containing surveillance video of nearby military installations also was recovered.


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An Afghan policeman and a U.S. soldier stop a man during search for four al Qaeda militants who escaped from Bagram prison in July 2005.

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