ISIS No. 2 leader killed in US airstrike

ISIS No. 2 leader killed in US airstrike
© Getty Images

A U.S. military airstrike last week killed the No. 2 leader of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS), the White House announced on Friday. 

Fadhil Ahmad al-Hayali, also known as Hajji Mutazz, was killed in a U.S. military air strike on Aug. 18 while traveling in a vehicle near Mosul, Iraq, National Security Council spokesman Ned Price said in a statement. 

ADVERTISEMENT

Al-Hayali was traveling at the time along with an ISIS media operative known as Abu Abdullah, Price said.  

Al-Hayali was a senior member of the ISIS Shura Council, a senior deputy to ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi and a primary coordinator for moving large amounts of weapons, explosives, vehicles and people between Iraq and Syria, according to Price. 

He supported ISIS operations in both Iraq and Syria. He was in charge of operations in Iraq and instrumental in planning operations over the past two years, including the seizure of Mosul last year. 

Al-Hayali was also a member of al Qaeda in Iraq, ISIS's predecessor in Iraq, and previously served as ISIS's military emir in Baghdad and the emir of Ninewa Province, the statement said. 

"Al-Hayali’s death will adversely impact ISIL’s operations given that his influence spanned ISIL’s finance, media, operations, and logistics," Price said, using an alternative acronym for ISIS. 

"The United States and its coalition partners are determined to degrade and destroy this terrorist group which has wrought so much harm and suffering on the people of the region and beyond," he added.