New Delhi: Iran on Saturday denied a report which stated that Al-Qaida’s second-highest leader Abdullah Ahmed Abdullah, who is accused of being one of the masterminds of the 1998 bombings on US embassies in Africa, was killed in Iran three months ago. Also Read - Jesus Christ! UK Archaeologist Claims to 'Find' Jesus' Childhood Home During Excavation in Israel's Nazareth

The top Al-Qaida terrorist was killed in Iran in August by Israeli operatives acting at the behest of the United States, reported the New York Times on Friday, citing intelligence officials. Also Read - United States Envoy Insists Pressure On Iran Will Persist Under Joe Biden

The report said that Abdullah Ahmed Abdullah, who went by the nom de guerre Abu Muhammad al-Masri, was gunned down by two men on a motorcycle in the streets of Tehran on August 7. The killing of Masri, who was seen as a likely successor to al Qaida’s current leader, Ayman al-Zawahiri, was kept secret until now, the newspaper reported. Also Read - India Welcomes Normalisation of Relations Between Sudan and Israel

The NYT report further stated that it was unclear what, if any, role the United States had in the killing of the Egyptian-born militant. US authorities had been tracking Masri and other al Qaeda operatives in Iran for years, it said.

Responding to the NYT report, Iran said that there were no al Qaida “terrorists” on its soil.

A report by international news organization Reuters, Foreign Ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh issued a statement on this matter. He said that the United States and Israel sometimes “try to tie Iran to such groups by lying and leaking false information to the media in order to avoid responsibility for the criminal activities of this group and other terrorist groups in the region”.

The administration of U.S. President Donald Trump’s “scare-mongering tactic against Iran has become routine,” Khatibzadeh said.