The Islamic State leader killed Thursday during a U.S. Special Operations forces raid in Syria was working undercover trying to rebuild the terrorist group, carried a gun wherever he went and once was detained by American forces in Iraq nearly 15 years ago, reports say.
Abu Ibrahim al-Hashimi al-Qurayshi, who assumed control of the militant group in October 2019 following another U.S. military raid that killed former leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, detonated a large amount of explosives during the overnight operation in Atmeh, sources told Fox News.
“Several Iraqi intelligence officials say al-Baghdadi kept [Al-Qurayshi] away from the battlefield with the intention of protecting him so he would lead ISIS in the future, particularly because of his academic study of Islam, his two-decade history as part of jihadist groups, and his detailed, firsthand knowledge of the organization’s structure,” BBC correspondent Feras Kilani wrote last year about the shadowy militant leader.
In Kilani’s report for BBC Arabic, translated into English for New Lines Magazine, he cited a former ISIS detainee and Iraqi intelligence sources as saying that Al-Qurayshi carried a firearm wherever he went and as of 2021, was working undercover in Syria with the intent of rebuilding ISIS.
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