Gen. David Petraeus said affiliated groups have "enclaves and sanctuaries" in Afghanistan and that "tentacles of Al Qaeda" have touched countries throughout the Middle East and northern Africa. But he said the terrorist group has suffered" very significant losses" in recent months, and agreed with Afghan President Hamid Karzai's recent assessment that there is no Al Qaeda based in his country.
Still, he said he believes Usama bin Laden and his No. 2 Ayman al-Zawahiri remain in charge of the terrorist network.
"They surface periodically. We see communications that they send out," Petraeus said.