BAGHDAD/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Donald Trump introduced on Sunday that fugitive Islamic State chief Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi died in a raid by U.S. particular forces in northwest Syria, in a significant blow to the jihadist group.
U.S. President Donald Trump makes an announcement on the White Home following studies that U.S. forces attacked Islamic State chief Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi in northern Syria, in Washington, U.S., October 27, 2019. REUTERS/Jim Bourg
Baghdadi killed himself throughout the raid by detonating a suicide vest, Trump stated in a televised deal with from the White Home.
Check outcomes from the aftermath of the raid had positively recognized Baghdadi, he stated.
“He was a sick and wicked man and now he’s gone,” Trump stated.
Trump stated “many” of Baghdadi’s folks had been killed, and added that in killing himself, Baghdadi additionally killed three youngsters.
U.S. forces suffered no personnel losses, he stated. He additionally thanked Russia, Turkey, Syria and Iraq for his or her help.
Baghdadi had lengthy been sought by the USA as head of a jihadist group that at one level managed giant areas of Syria and Iraq, the place it declared a caliphate. Islamic State has carried out atrocities towards spiritual minorities and assaults on 5 continents within the identify of a model of an ultra-fanatic Islam that horrified mainstream Muslims.
Lately the group had misplaced most of its territory.
However whereas the destruction of the quasi-state that Baghdadi constructed has denied the group its recruiting instrument and logistical base from which it might prepare fighters and plan coordinated assaults abroad, most safety consultants imagine Islamic State stays a risk by means of clandestine operations or assaults.
“The thug who tried so onerous to intimidate others spent his final moments in utter concern, panic and dread, fearful of the American forces coming down on him,” Trump stated.
Trump stated Baghdadi died after working right into a dead-end tunnel.
“He reached the tip of the tunnel as our canines chased him down. He ignited his vest, killing himself and his three youngsters. His physique was mutilated by the blasts. The tunnel had caved on him,” Trump added.
Trump had confronted withering criticism from fellow Republicans and Democrats for asserting a withdrawal of U.S. troops from northeastern Syria earlier this month, which permitted Turkey to assault America’s Kurdish allies because it sought to arrange a “protected zone”.
Many critics of the pullout have expressed concern each on the abandoning of the Kurdish forces who had been instrumental in defeating Islamic State in Syria, and that the transfer may enable the group to regain power and pose a risk to U.S. pursuits.
Reporting by Ahmed Rasheed and Phil Stewart; Further reporting by Khalil Ashawi in Syria, Daniel Wallis and Steve Holland in Washington, Parisa Hafezi in Dubai, Ahmed Aboulenein in Baghdad, Lisa Barrington in Beirut, Orhan Coskun in Ankara and Ezgi Erkoyun in Istanbul; Writing by Jason Neely; Modifying by Frances Kerry