Senior Islamic State leader captured in U.S. military raid in Syria
U.S.-led forces detained a senior Islamic State leader in Syria on Thursday, according to the coalition.
“Coalition forces detained a senior Daesh leader during an operation in Syria June 16,” Operation Inherent Resolve said in a statement. “The detained individual was assessed to be an experienced bomb maker and facilitator who became one of the group’s top leaders in Syria.”
Major Youssef Hamoud, a spokesperson for the Syrian National Army, a separate coalition of rebel groups backed by Turkey, told Reuters that a helicopter raid occurred in Al-Humaira, a village located just south of the Turkey-Syria border.
He told the outlet it was the first U.S. helicopter operation in areas under the rebel coalition’s control.
The U.S.-led forces vowed to continue hunting the “remnants” of ISIS in the statement.
“The mission was meticulously planned to minimize the risk of collateral damage, particularly any potential harm to civilians,” the statement read. “There were no civilians harmed during the operation nor any damage to coalition aircraft or assets.”
President Biden announced in February that the U.S. had conducted a helicopter raid in northwest Syria, killing the leader of the Islamic State terrorist group, Abu Ibrahim al-Hashimi al-Qurashi.
That raid drew comparisons to al-Qurashi’s predecessor’s death in 2019 during the Trump administration. Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi detonated a suicide vest in a tunnel in northwest Syria during a U.S. attack.
The U.S.-backed forces declared victory over the Islamic State in March 2019 after retaking the last village held by the terrorist group in Syria.
More than 100 ISIS militants attacked a Syrian prison in January, but U.S.-backed Kurdish fighters soon regained control of the facility.