Islamic State says its chief was killed, names successor -audio message By Reuters


By Mahmoud Mourad and Yomna Ehab

CAIRO (Reuters) -Islamic State (IS) militant chief Abu al-Hassan al-Hashemi al-Quraishi was killed in combating, its spokesman mentioned in an audio message posted on an affiliated Telegram channel, one other heavy blow to a gaggle that after struck worry throughout the Center East.

IS has chosen Abu al-Hussein al-Husseini al-Quraishi to as its new chief, the spokesman added. He mentioned Abu al-Hassan al-Hashemi al-Quraishi was killed whereas “combating enemies of God”, with out elaborating.

No particulars concerning the new IS chief got within the audio.

The spokesman urged Islamic State members in all international locations to pledge allegiance to the brand new chief, including that “he is likely one of the loyal sons of the (Islamic) state”.

“This doesn’t suggest the group is completed, however for now it’s a shadow of its former self, they’re hollowed out by way of their management and their capacity to hold out assaults,” mentioned Hassan Hassan, creator of a e book on Islamic State.

“They do not have iconic, charismatic leaders any extra, and so they have not carried out any main assaults just lately.”

The White Home welcomed the information that Abu al-Hassan al-Hashemi al-Quraishi had been killed, Nationwide Safety Council spokesman John Kirby (NYSE:) informed reporters.

“We’re nonetheless working our manner via that,” Kirby mentioned when requested about studies of the dying.

Islamic State introduced Abu al-Hassan al-Hashemi al-Quraishi as its new chief in March after the dying of predecessor Abu Ibrahim al-Hashemi al-Quraishi.

The latter Quraishi was the brother of slain former IS caliph Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, based on two Iraqi safety officers and one Western safety supply.

Each Quraishi and Baghdadi died by blowing themselves and members of the family up throughout U.S. raids on their hideouts in northern Syria.

Islamic State emerged from the chaos of the civil battle in neighbouring Iraq and took over huge swathes of Iraq and Syria in 2014. Baghdadi declared an Islamic caliphate from a mosque within the northern Iraqi metropolis of Mosul that yr and proclaimed himself caliph of all Muslims.

Islamic State’s brutal rule, throughout which it killed and executed hundreds of individuals within the identify of its slender interpretation of Islam, got here to an finish in Mosul when Iraqi and worldwide forces defeated the group there in 2017.

Because the peak of its energy seven years in the past, when it dominated thousands and thousands of individuals within the Center East and frightened the world with lethal bombings and shootings, Islamic State has slipped again into the shadows.

Its remaining hundreds of militants have lately principally hid out in distant hinterlands of fractured Iraq and Syria, although they’re nonetheless able to finishing up vital insurgent-style assaults.

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