THE ‘WHITE WIDOW’ AND HER SON, 12, KILLED IN CIA DRONE STRIKE.

‘White Widow’ lured dozens of women ji­hadists

The London Free Press - - NP - Ben Farmer, Robert mendick Rob crilly and

NEW YORK • A Bri­tish ISIL re­cruiter known as the White Widow and her 12-year-old son are be­lieved to have been killed in a CIA op­er­a­tion af­ter Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump re­laxed re­stric­tions on the U.S. spy agency’s drone strikes.

Sally-Anne Jones re­port­edly died close to the border between Syria and Iraq, in a strike thought to have also killed her son, Jojo Dixon.

The punk rock singer-turned-ji­hadist be­came Bri­tain’s most wanted wo­man af­ter flee­ing to Syria from Kent in 2013 to marry com­puter hacker Ju­naid Hus­sain, an Is­lamic State of Iraq and the Le­vant fighter from Birm­ing­ham. Jones is be­lieved to have at­tracted dozens of fe­male re­cruits via so­cial me­dia.

A de­fence source said the strike had been car­ried out by the CIA, which runs its own fleet of Preda­tor drones armed with Hell­fire mis­siles.

Trump ramped up the CIA’s strike pro­gram soon af­ter tak­ing of­fice, al­low­ing the agency more free­dom to carry out strikes and hint­ing he may re­lax rules of en­gage­ment de­signed to pro­tect civil­ians. The CIA de­clined to com­ment.

The Bri­tish govern­ment is not be­lieved to have been con­sulted over the strike in June and there was no U.K. mil­i­tary in­volve­ment.

Sir Michael Fal­lon, the de­fence sec­re­tary, said Jones was a le­git­i­mate tar­get. He warned Bri­tish na­tion­als who had joined ISIL and were plot­ting at­tacks on Bri­tain “you have made your­self a le­git­i­mate tar­get and you run the risk ev­ery hour of ev­ery day of be­ing on the wrong end of an RAF or a United States mis­sile.”

The sis­ter of one girl re­cruited by Jones said she hoped the 50-year-old would “rot in hell.”

One coun­tert­er­ror­ism source told The Tele­graph: “I don’t think the sig­nif­i­cance of her death should be un­der­es­ti­mated. She was gen­uinely very dan­ger­ous.”

Jojo was re­port­edly used as a hu­man shield by his mother and step­fa­ther to pro­tect them from mil­i­tary drone strikes. A pho­to­graph taken in Raqqa in 2016 showed the boy wear­ing the uni­form of the “cubs of the caliphate,” the cloth­ing worn by ISIL’s child sol­diers.

Jones fled to Syria with her son in Novem­ber 2013, join­ing her boyfriend, whom she had met on­line. The cou­ple later mar­ried in Raqqa. Hus­sain, from Birm­ing­ham, was as­sas­si­nated in a U.S. drone strike in Au­gust 2015 in Raqqa.

Sally-Anne Jones

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