Two Swedish jihadists fighters were killed in US air strikes targeting Islamic State (Isis/Daesh) and al-Qaeda in Iraq and Lebanon, a Pentagon spokesman said. Colonel Steve Warren, spokesman for the US-led Global Coalition to Counter ISIL, identified the two men as Abu Zubair al-Bosni and Khaled Othman al-Timawi.
Al-Bosni was a Swedish citizen of Bosnian origin, and was killed in Bajar, Iraq. Swedish born al-Timawi was the "deputy-Emir" of the Anwar al-Awlaki Battalion, and was killed in a US air strike in Lebanon, said Warren.
The Anwar al-Awlaki Battalion, named after a US born al-Qaeda preacher, is composed of English-speaking IS militants charged with planning and executing terror attacks in English-speaking countries, according to anti-IS group Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently.
"Both of these strikes deprive ISIL of motivated foreign fighters who have displayed leadership aptitude," Warren said in response to a question from CNN. "We are specifically targeting cells, groups, and individuals who we expect are plotting to export terror," he added. Both strikes took place on 16 March.
Al-Timawi, 26, began studying chemical engineering in Borås in 2009, where contemporaries described him as more interested in partying than religious observance. After graduating he worked for a period as a football referee, Sweden's Expressen reported.
Approximately 300 Swedes are believed to have travelled to Syria and Iraq to fight for jihadist groups, according to security consultancy the Soufan Group, with the country having the second highest number of IS militants per capita in Europe after Belgium.