Islamic State leader killed while ‘fighting the enemies of God’

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The leader of Islamic State has been killed in battle, a spokesman for the group said. It is not clear who killed the group commander – or where.

No group as yet has taken responsibility for the killing.

But IS spokesperson Abu Omar al-Muhajer said the leader lost his life while “fighting the enemies of God”.

He announced in audio released today: “He died fighting the enemies of God killing some of them before being killed like a man on the battlefield.”

Al-Muhajer added that he will “mourn” the death of Abu Al-Hassan Al-Qurayshi.

Al-Qurayshi took over leadership of the group following the death of his predecessor, Abu Ibrahim al-Hashimi al-Qurayshi, in a US raid in February in northwest Syria.

Little was known about the figure before he took over IS.

He is the third leader to be filled since the group’s founder, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, was found by US troops in an October 2019 raid.

Little is now also known about successor Abu al-Hussein al-Husseini al-Qurayshi.

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Al-Muhajer described him as “one of the veteran warriors and one of the loyal sons of the Islamic State”.

The US has welcomed the news about the former leader’s death.

US National Security Council spokesman John Kirby said: “We certainly welcome the news of the death of another ISIS leader.

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“I don’t have any additional operational details to provide at this time.”

“Qurashi” refers to a tribe of the Prophet Muhammad.

IS leaders must claim descent from this group.

Reports suggest the leader may in fact have been killed accidentally during a raid.

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