Two top al Qaeda leaders have reportedly been killed in Iraq. Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki announced Abu Ayyub al-Masri, the leader of al Qaeda in Iraq and Abu Omar al-Baghdadi, the head of the Islamic State of Iraq, were killed in an air strike by American troops this weekend. “The death of these terrorists is potentially the most significant blow to al Qaeda in Iraq since the beginning of the insurgency," said the top commander to U.S. troops in the country. Maliki said documents and handwritten letters found in a ditch with their bodies implicated the insurgents. Troops took 16 men into custody after the raid, reports the Washington Post. The Prime Minister’s announcement comes in the midst of election controversy and a push by Maliki to manually recount the votes during last month’s parliamentary election.