ISIS leader killed in US anti-terrorist operation in Syria

by Al Jazeera

Abu Ibrahim al-Hashimi al-Qurayshi led ISIL (ISIS) from the shadows for a little more than two years before he was killed during a raid by US forces on a house in northern Syria.

The US military conducted the operation on Wednesday that killed al-Qurayshi, who US officials say blew himself up – killing members of his own family.

The 45-year-old Iraqi had been an important leader in ISIL’s precursor, the Islamic State of Iraq – an offshoot of al-Qaeda – since soon after the US invasion that toppled Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein in 2003.

Al-Qurayshi was named the leader of ISIL shortly after his predecessor Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi blew himself up during a US operation in 2019 in Syria.

Al-Baghdadi had declared an “Islamic caliphate” from a mosque in the Iraqi city of Mosul after his fighters overran the city and then seized vast swaths of Iraq and Syria in 2014.

By contrast, al-Qurayshi was a low-profile figure who led the group at a time when it was under intense military pressure from US-led, Iraqi and other forces after losing all the territory it had once controlled.

Al-Qurayshi – who has also gone by the names Abdullah Amir Mohammed Saeed al-Mawla and Hajji Abdullah Qardash – was considered a brutal operator, but had largely flown under the radar of Iraqi and US intelligence until he became the ISIL leader.

Read the full story on Al Jazeera

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