According to US and Iraqi officials, al-Kurdi was a veteran of training camps in Afghanistan and became a chief bombmaker of Zarqawi's group in 2003. Reportedly, al-Kurdi was able to assemble his bombs using hundreds of rockets and explosives another operative, Ammar al-Zubaydi, had stolen from Iraqi warehouses early in the war.
When he was captured in a January 15, 2005, raid in Baghdad (announced ten days later), officials said he was responsible for making 75% of the car bombs in Iraq from August 2003, and he was said to confess to 32 of them. Among these were: the Jordanian embassy bombing, the bombing of U.N. Headquarters, the killing of Ayatollah Mohammed Baqir al-Hakim, the bombing of the Italian base in Nasiriyah, and the bombing which killed Izzedin Salim, head of the Iraqi Governing Council.
Officials said that al-Kurdi was planning attacks against polling centers during the January 30, 2005 elections. He also provided information about Zarqawi's movements, hiding places, and communications methods.
- US captures 'top Zarqawi ally' – BBC
- Abu Omar al-Kurdi, aka Sami Mohammed Ali Said al-Jaaf - Iraqi Kurd
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