ISIS confirms death of its leader Abu Hussein Al Husseini Al Qurashi

Turkish President had announced his death in April

ISIS made the announcement confirming the leader's death on its Telegram channel. AP
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ISIS has confirmed the death of its leader Abu Hussein Al Husseini Al Qurashi in a recording posted on the extremist group's Telegram channel.

Al Qurashi “was killed after direct clashes” with extremist group Hayat Tahrir Al Sham in Syria's Idlib province, a group spokesman said in the audio message.

He said the group had declared Abu Hafs Al Hashimi Al Qurashi as its new leader.

In April, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced that the leader of ISIS had been killed in Syria in an operation carried out by Turkey's MIT intelligence agency.

“The suspected leader of Daesh [ISIS], code name Abu Hussein Al Qurashi, has been neutralised in an operation carried out yesterday by the MIT in Syria,” Mr Erdogan told the TRT Turk broadcaster at the time.

He said the MIT had been following Al Qurashi for a long time.

Turkey has had troops in northern Syria since 2020 and controls entire zones with the help of Syrian auxiliaries.

After conquering large parts of Iraq and Syria in 2014, ISIS saw its self-proclaimed “caliphate” collapse under a wave of offensives.

The extremist group's austere and terror-ridden rule was marked by beheadings and mass shootings.

It was defeated in Iraq in 2017 and in Syria two years later, but sleeper cells still carry out attacks in both countries.

In November last year, ISIS said its previous leader, Abu Hasan Al Hashimi Al Qurashi, had been killed.

His predecessor, Abu Ibrahim Al Qurashi, was killed in February last year in a US raid in Syria's Idlib province.

The group's first “caliph”, Abu Bakr Al Baghdadi, was also killed in Idlib in a US raid in October 2019.

Updated: August 03, 2023, 5:34 PM