Wednesday 22 November 2017

Iraqi airstrike kills 13 senior Isil commanders

A car bomb explodes next to Iraqi special forces armored vehicles as they advance towards Islamic State held territory in Mosul, Iraq. Photo: REUTERS
A car bomb explodes next to Iraqi special forces armored vehicles as they advance towards Islamic State held territory in Mosul, Iraq. Photo: REUTERS

Josie Ensor

Iraqi warplanes hit a house where Isil leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi was holding a meeting with senior commanders, killing more than a dozen.

The Iraqi military released a list of the names of 13 dead commanders yesterday, which did not include Baghdadi.

They confirmed that Baghdadi, whose real name is Ibrahim Awwad Ibrahim Ali Muhammad al-Badri al-Samarrai, was seen moving from Syria to Iraq before the strike on the western city of Anbar, on Saturday.

The military said Baghdadi moved last week in a convoy from Raqqa, in Syria, to the region of al-Qaim, on the Iraqi side of the border, to discuss with commanders "the collapse happening in Mosul and to chose a successor for him".

Reports circulated over the weekend saying the Iraq-born Isil chief was injured in the strike but managed to escape.

However, it was not possible to independently confirm the reports, and rumours of his ill health circulate regularly.

Three other Isil positions in western Iraq were targeted in the same wave of air strikes by F-16s, killing 64 fighters, the statement said.

Baghdadi has long been thought to be moving between Isil territory in northeastern Syria and northwestern Iraq as he looks to evade capture. (© Daily Telegraph London)

Telegraph.co.uk

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