(FOX) – A member of U.S. Navy SEAL Team Six was killed and three others were wounded in a raid against a group of senior Al Qaeda leaders in central Yemen, officials said.
The U.S. Central Command said in a statement Sunday that another service member was injured in a “hard landing” in a nearby location. An MV-22 Osprey aircraft used in the raid was unable to fly afterward and “was then intentionally destroyed in place.”
“Americans are saddened this morning with news that a life of a heroic service member has been taken in our fight against the evil of radical Islamic terrorism,” President Trump said in a statement. “The sacrifices made by the men and women of our armed forces, and the families they leave behind, are the backbone of the liberty we hold so dear as Americans, united in our pursuit of a safer nation and a freer world.”
A total of 14 fighters from Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula were killed in the assault, and U.S. service members captured “information that will likely provide insight into the planning of future terror plots,” according to the military.
“We are deeply saddened by the loss of one of our elite servicemembers,” Commander of U.S. Central Command Gen. Joseph Votel said in a statement. “The sacrifices are very profound in our fight against terrorists who threaten innocent peoples across the globe.”
The raid on Al Qaeda headquarters was the first counterterrorism offensive under President Trump aimed at gathering intelligence about the militant group, a U.S. official told Fox News. It was also first combat death under the new administration.
A U.S. official told Fox News planing for the operation began before Trump assumed office, but had not been given the green light.