Farah Abdi Warsameh, Associated Press
In this Dec. 8, 2008 file photo, armed al-shabab fighters on pickup trucks prepare to travel into the city, just outside Mogadishu, in Somalia.

MOGADISHU, Somalia — A commander of Somalia's Islamic extremist rebels, al-Shabab, confirms that the leader of the terror group was killed in a U.S. airstrike.

Abu Mohammed said Saturday the militants were meeting at an undisclosed location to pick the successor to Ahmed Abdi Godane.

Godane and other al-Shabab officials were killed when a U.S. airstrike hit two cars in southern Somalia on Monday.

A senior Somali intelligence officer, who insisted on anonymity because he is not authorized to speak to the press, said Zakariya Ismael who has a $3 million bounty on his head, is one of the candidates to succeed Godane.

Godane had publicly claimed al-Shabab was responsible for the deadly Westgate Mall attack in Nairobi, Kenya. Al-Shabab is an Islamic extremist group aligned with al-Qaida.