Two Isis leaders killed in US raid in Syria, says Pentagon

US raids come just weeks after Isis top leader is killed in battle

Shweta Sharma
Monday 12 December 2022 09:32 GMT
Syria airstrikes

The US military has killed two Isis officials in Syria in a helicopter raid in an early morning operation on Sunday, the US Central Command said in a statement.

The raid was conducted at 2.57am local time (23.57 GMT) at an unspecified location in eastern Syria.

The “unilateral operation” was carried out following “extensive planning” to ensure its success, Centcom said, adding that no civilians were killed or injured in their initial assessments.

The military said they neutralised two members of the militant group, including one Anas, an Isis Syria province official who was allegedly involved in the group’s deadly plotting and facilitation operations in eastern Syria.

“Isis continues to represent a threat to the security and stability of the region. This operation reaffirms CENTCOM’s steadfast commitment to ensuring the group’s enduring defeat,” said Centcom spokesperson Joe Buccino.

“The death of these ISIS officials will disrupt the terrorist organization’s ability to further plot and carry out destabilizing attacks in the Middle East.”

The statement added that the US remains committed to countering the “global threat from ISIS in partnership with local forces”.

“Isis continues to pursue an aggressive operational agenda, including external attacks that threaten US allies and partners in the region and beyond,” it added.

The raid comes less than two weeks after the US welcomed the Isis announcement that its leader Abu Hassan al-Hashimi al-Qurayshi was killed in battle.

The US said he was killed in a battle with rebel forces in the southern city of Deraa in October.

It is believed that al-Qurayshi took up the group’s leadership following the death of his predecessor Abu Ibrahim al-Qurayshi in a US raid in February in Idlib province of Syria. Little is known about al-Qurayshi who is believed to have taken a nom de guerre or a war name like many other Isis leaders.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights war monitor described the operation as the “most prominent” action against Isis for at least three weeks. It said Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) troops were also part of the raid.

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