Nightly News   |  October 05, 2013

U.S. commandos raid terrorist hideouts

The U.S. carried out twin campaigns in Somalia and Libya where it captured a senior al Qaeda official. NBC’s Jim Miklaszewski reports.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>> late word from the pentagon this evening confirming that a daring us military operation inside somalia has targeted the terror group behind the deadly kenya mall attack.

us special operations forces , lead by navy seals , staged the overnight raid in what's described as an al shabab stronghold.

and there is also word tonight a senior al qaeda leader has been captured or killed in a separate incident in libya .

let's get right to our pentagon correspondent jim miklawzewski to tell us more. jim, first off tell us what happened in somalia ?

well lester this has been a busy and what looks like productive day for us special operations forces , we dont yet have all the details...but us officials tell us

in a predawn raid, us navy seals hit the beach in southern somalia and attacked

a compound of the al shabaab militant organization in the town of barawe...

according to us officials, the seals either killed or captured a high-ranking commander of al shabaab

locals report there was an intense gun battle but there's no word that any seals were wounded.

al shabaab is the islamist gouup that carried out that horrific, bloody terrorist attack against the westgate mall in nairobi kenya two weeks ago,,,killing 67 innocent civilians.

sources tell nbc news that it aappears however that the seals did not get the groups top leader ahmed godane,,but one of the commanders further down the chain of command --

sources tell us today's raid was in fact in retaliation for that terrorist attack in kenya .

and, mik, shortly after we heard about the raid in somalia , we heard of the capture of an al qaeda leader in libya . was that an american operation or somewhat related to this?

in a totally separate incident tonight, this one in libya , a top ranking al qaeda official abu anas al libi has also been killed or captured by armed gunmen.

al libi was a close confident and computer expert for osama bin laden -- and believed to have been the mastermind in the 1998 bombings of the us embassies

in kenya and tanzania --

he's been on the fbi's most wanted terrorist list for over a decade with a $5 million reward on his head.

if al libi is in custody and winds up in the hands of the us authorities he would almost certainly be brought to the us to face trial for those embassy bombing...

but it's not clear yet what the us would do with the al shabab commander....

there were no americans among the 67 dead -- so its possible he would be turned over to authorities in kenya .