ISIS State Leader Dies During U.S. Raid in Syria, Biden says

Photo courtesy of MGN

By Keshav Vinod

On Thursday, February 3, the leader of the extremist Islamist State was killed. He blew himself up along with the members of his own family during an overnight raid carried out by the United States special operations forces in the Northwestern region of Syria, President Joe Biden said.

The raid was conducted by U.S. Special Operations forces under the control of U.S. Central Command, Pentagon Press Secretary John F. Kirby said in a statement, with no American casualties.

The target of this raid was Abu Ibrahim al-Hashimi al-Qurayshi, who was thrust into command of the organization in 2019 after the death of his predecessor Abu bakr al-Baghdadi. Al-Baghdadi was also killed in a US raid in the same region. He also died similarly to Abu Ibrahim, by setting off a suicide bomb that killed him and his family.

50 special forces landed on Syrian soil in helicopters and attacked a house that was in a corner of rebel-held Syria. They clashed with opposition for two hours and the town of Atmeh turned into a war zone overnight as US forces and IS forces rained gunfire on each other.

According to the Pentagon Press Secretary John Kirby, special forces were able to evacuate 10 people from the compound and that Abu Ibrahim killed his wife and children in the bomb that he used. Forces were able to ID Abu Ibrahim thanks to the DNA which they were able to scrape from the building.

Abu Ibrahim largely kept away from the public eye after taking control of the extremist organization and never once made a public appearance and seldom used audio recordings. This attack again leaves the IS, once a powerhouse that largely took over Syria and Iraq, once again without a leader.