The head of the Islamic State, Abu Ibrahim al-Hashemi al-Qurayshi, died living most of his life: off the grid in the jihadist underworld.
Little is known about the ISIS leader, whose real name is Amir Muhammad Said Abdel-Rahman al-Mawla, or other members of the group’s senior command. But his death in a US commando raid in Syria on Thursday was a blow to the terrorist group and a victory for US counterterrorism efforts.
While he is not as prominent as his predecessor, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, who died in a similar operation in the US in 2019“Mr. Colin P. Clarke, counterterrorism analyst at Soufan Group, a security consulting firm based in New York, said Qurayshi remains highly respected in jihadist circles and is well known. He is very intelligent and has the ability to think strategically.
Mr. Clarke said that al-Qurayshi had kept a low profile, which helped him avoid a US-led manhunt but could also hinder his ability to expand his network and brand globally. of the Islamic State. In March 2019, ISIS lost the last piece of territory from their so-called caliphate in several areas of Syria and Iraq.
“The trade-off is, he’s a specter, and doesn’t exactly work to inspire jihadist recruits,” Mr Clarke said.
“The next ISIS leader could be someone relatively unknown, which will expose the US and its allies to the challenge of intelligence gathering and network mapping. his. But it is also a challenge for ISIS, especially if the next leader is not someone with a reputation on par with the previous jihadist leaders.”
Al-Qurayshi, 45 years old and born in Iraq, was named the head of ISIS after al-Baghdadi died in October 2019 under similar circumstances: exploding his suicide vest when US forces suddenly stormed. raid his hideout in Syria’s Idlib province. Once he captured that mantle, the United States placed a bounty of up to $10 million on him.
The US government says he “helped promote and justify the kidnapping, massacre, and trafficking of the Yazidi religious minority in northwestern Iraq and was also the leader of several of its global terrorist operations.” This group”.
He was captured by the US military in Iraq in early 2008. His release date is unknown. While in American custody, he appeared to cooperate in interrogations and even provided information about other ISIS agents, according to interrogation reports that were later made public.
The day after his arrest, the US military’s Central Command said that operations in Mosul, Iraq, had resulted in the arrest of “a wanted person believed to be the leader of Al Qaeda in Iraq.” for the network to operate in the city”. It said the man “had previously served as a judge of the illegal court system involved in ordering and approving kidnappings and executions.”
Prior to that, al-Qurayshi served in the Iraqi army briefly before the fall of Saddam Hussein and completed his Master’s degree in Islamic Studies from the University of Mosul in January 2007. interrogators that he joined the Islamic State in Iraq soon after. .
https://www.nytimes.com/2022/02/03/world/middleeast/abu-ibrahim-al-hashemi-al-qurayshi-isis.html Who is ISIS leader Abu Ibrahim al-Hashemi al-Qurayshi?