US officials: drone targeted embassy plot leader

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WASHINGTON (AP) - U.S. and Yemeni officials say the target of a Dec. 12th drone strike in Yemen was the ringleader behind the summer plot that shuttered 19 diplomatic posts across Africa and the Mideast. But he was only wounded, and escaped, while up to a dozen others were killed.

Two U.S. and one Yemeni official say Shawqi Ali Ahmad al-Badani was the target. He is a mid-level leader in Al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula. U.S. officials say between nine and 12 other militants were killed. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not allowed to describe drone operations publicly.

Reports from Yemen were that the strike hit a wedding, killing 13 civilians.

The Yemeni government paid the local tribe compensation.

The Pentagon did not offer immediate comment.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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