CAIRO – Egyptian security officials say police have arrested a top aide to al-Qaida chief Ayman al-Zawahri in a Nile Delta city and are interrogating him.
The officials say Tharwat Salah Shehata was caught in an apartment in the 10th of Ramadan district of the city of Sharqiya. Officials said he has been training militants in eastern Libya, a hub of extremist Islamist militia groups. Officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to the press.
Shehata, a member of the Egyptian Islamic Jihad group that assassinated former President Anwar Sadat in 1981, was sentenced to death for an assassination attempt on a former prime minister in the 1990s. In 2001, his group merged with al-Qaida.
Shehata is listed by the United Nations as an al-Qaida affiliate.