Islamic State on Tuesday confirmed that one of their most prominent leaders was killed in an alleged air strike by America in Syria. The longest serving leader of IS was the mastermind behind the attacks carried out by IS outside of Syria.
A US defense official has confirmed that they targeted Abu Muhammad al-Adnani’s vehicle during their airstrike. Al-Adnani was traveling in the town of al-Bab in Syria. The defense official, however, did not confirm Adnani's death. USA takes time to confirm such deaths. The official announcement generally comes long after the militant group has made its confirmation.
Adnani and his men
Abu Muhammad al-Adnani was the last of the members in the Islamic State militant group. He was the most visible among the IS militants. Al-Adnani was the head of external operations for IS. He was in charge of the attacks in Europe and other parts of the world. Attacking Europe had become a key tactic for IS after it started losing crucial territory to the military in Iraq and Syria.
In a statement, IS has said that al-Adnani’s death will not affect the militant group. They pledged that their last senior leader’s killers will have to face agony and suffering of the worst possible kind. A Site Intelligence monitor group has reported that the statement by IS was published in the militant group’s newspaper, al-Naba.
Adnani was an indistinguishable propaganda chief for the Islamic State. He used online messages to hire fighters for the militant group. He provided them with inspiration and instructed them on attacks.
IS’s new setbacks
Islamic State is facing new setbacks from the Iraqi army and its allied militia. The Iraqi army and militia are steadily advancing towards where IS, till date, has had a very strong possession. Along with this, a US supported coalition has taken away IS’s holdings at the Turkish border. To top it all, IS has been experiencing relentless airstrikes from a number of countries. These airstrikes have resulted in the death of a number of leaders of the militant group. IS’s morale has been dampened and its organizational abilities have been affected adversely.
The recent death of al-Adnani would mean Islamic State’s loss of yet another member of their caliphate and a disturbance to their financial base. But it is feared that IS would, in retaliation, attack more European and Southeast Asian countries among other parts of the world.