WITH GLOBAL JIHADI NETWORK, ISLAMIC STATE IS LIKELY TO STAY
The mix of a local insurgency and digitally connected global jihadis gives the group staying power and the means to relaunch its future, from small cells of terrorists to those who never went there in the first place.»
A group that monitors the war in Syria said Tuesday it has “confirmed information” about the death of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the leader of the Islamic State, citing information received from the militants in eastern Syria.
Baghdadi’s death has been rumored numerous times in the past, and it was not immediately possible to independently verify the claim. There also were no immediate announcements from the Islamic State’s news channels.
U.S. Central Command said: “We cannot confirm this report, but hope it is true.”
The monitoring group the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights is based in Britain and relies on a network of activists in Syria for its reporting. The group’s director said Islamic State leaders had confirmed Baghdadi’s death to the Observatory’s activists in the Syrian province of Deir al-Zour.
A post on the group’s website said it “confirmed information ... about the death” of Baghdadi, whose real name is Awwad Ibrahim Ali al-Badri al-Samarrai.
His apparent death or capture has been asserted several times in the past decade as his breakaway al-Qaida faction gradually formed into the core of the Islamic State. But the various reports later proved false or could not be substantiated. — The Washington Post
As far back as 2012, Iraqi officials claimed that they had captured Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, pictured above, in Baghdad.