Izzat Ibrahim al-Douri aka 'King of Clubs': Former right-hand-man to Saddam Hussein shot dead, says Iraqi government

The Iraqi government claims the former Hussein aide and insurgency mastermind has been killed in a military operation

Adam Withnall
Friday 17 April 2015 23:53
An undated file photograph of Izzat Ibrahim al-Douri at a memorial ceremony in Iraq
An undated file photograph of Izzat Ibrahim al-Douri at a memorial ceremony in Iraq

The Iraqi government claims to have shot dead one of the most senior militant leaders in the country, a former high-profile aide to dictator Saddam Hussein.

Izzat Ibrahim al-Douri escaped the overhaul of Hussein's government in 2003 and was named leader of his Ba'ath party - which was later outlawed - after his death.

He was known as the "King of Clubs" for his position in the famous pack of cards issued by the US for wanted members of the fallen regime.

Speaking to al-Arabiya TV, the governor of the Salahuddin province in Iraq said that al-Douri had been killed by the Iraqi army in part of a wide-scale military operation.

The station showed an image of a dead man resembling the former Hussein general, though the killing was not independently verified.

Al-Douri has been credited with leading the now long-running insurgency against the Shia-led government of Iraq.

But the general's links to the Isis militant group remain clear. While some have suggested he may be offering them guidance in his role as leader of the Naqshbandi Order, last summer al-Douri's banned Ba'ath party "declared war" against the newcomers.

In a statement, the party had said: "Isis is a terrorist organization that carry the project of destroying the popular revolution sweeping Iraq, and we will stand against it with all our power."

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