Libya's official news agency says a senior al-Qaida leader has been killed in a drone strike in the country's remote south.

LANA reports that Abu Talha al-Hassnawi, a senior member of al-Qaeda's North African affiliate, was killed when a drone struck his house late Monday in Sabha. The agency says al-Hassnawi had fled from the northern coastal city of Sirte, where Libyan militias are battling IS with the help of U.S. airstrikes.

The agency says al-Hassnawi was previously a leading member of al-Qaida's affiliate in Syria, and was a leading recruiter of fighters heading there.