Archive for the ‘ISIS’ Category

Sniper hits ISIS target from over 2 miles away – CNN

The unnamed marksman was part of Canada’s elite Joint Task Force 2 special operations unit that is currently deployed in an “advise and assist” capacity to help Iraqi security forces battle ISIS from behind the front line in Mosul.

“The Canadian Special Operations Command can confirm that a member of the Joint Task Force 2 successfully hit a target from 3,540 meters. For operational security reasons and to preserve the safety of our personnel and our Coalition partners, we will not discuss precise details on when and how this incident took place,” the unit said in a written statement.

Due to the distance of the shot, some voices in the military community expressed skepticism at the Canadian government’s report. The reported shot from 3,540 meters, or about 2.2 miles, would eclipse the previous sniper world record of 2,474 meters or 1.54 miles set by the United Kingdom’s Craig Harrison when he killed two Taliban insurgents in November 2009.

“The elite sniper was using a McMillan TAC-50 sniper rifle while firing from a high-rise during an operation that took place within the last month in Iraq. It took under 10 seconds to hit the target,” the paper said.

The Canadian military unit confirmed the distance of shot shortly after the Globe and Mail story was published, but the shot has yet to be formally confirmed a third party agency.

In 2016, the Canadian government announced it would triple its training efforts in northern Iraq despite pulling out of the US-led ISIS bombing campaign the year before.

In May, Iraqi forces began what they hope is the final push to crush ISIS in Mosul, Iraq’s second-largest city,

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Sniper hits ISIS target from over 2 miles away – CNN

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Russian warships fire missiles at ISIS in Syria – CNN International

The Admiral Essen and Admiral Grigorovich frigates, along with the Krasnodar submarine, fired the cruise missiles from the Mediterranean Sea, the Defense Ministry said in a statement posted to state news agency RIA.

ISIS command points and a weapons and ammunition depot were destroyed in Hama province of Syria, according to RIA. The ministry also said Turkey and Israel were informed about the missile launches, but made no mention of informing the US, which is leading an international coalition against ISIS in the country.

The strike comes amid tensions after a US warplane downed Syrian jet, the first time the US has shot down a manned aircraft since 1999.

Russia is the most powerful ally of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s regime, and the rare air-to-air encounter prompted Moscow to suspend a de-confliction hotline with the US-led coalition, designed to prevent any accidents in the skies over Syria.

The Syrian conflict has transformed from a civil war to a more complex battle involving international players and their proxies. While international players are focused on targeting ISIS, many are maneuvering to either prop up or depose Assad and his regime.

Iran, which also supports Assad, on Sunday fired missiles at ISIS targets in Syria, the first such strike carried out by Tehran on another country in three decades. It is a major escalation of Iran’s role in the war.

Russia this week said it thinks one of its airstrikes may have killed ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghadi, a figure who has evaded international forces for years. But US officials told CNN that the US has not confirmed Russia’s claim.

The US downed the Syrian warplane after a series of clashes between pro-regime troops and the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), which the US backs to fight ISIS.

According to the Pentagon, Syrian regime soldiers equipped with tanks, artillery and technical vehicles were advancing on the US-backed rebels’ position, forcing the coalition to use the de-confliction hotline with the Russians in an attempt to turn the regime troops back.

When that proved unsuccessful, coalition aircraft performed “strafing runs” near the regime positions, which halted their advance.

The Russian Ministry of Defense called the downing of the plane “a cynical violation of the sovereignty of the Syrian Arab Republic” and “military aggression.”

Russia has stopped using the de-confliction hotline, a US official said, and Moscow warned that aircraft operating where the shoot-down occurred would be considered “air targets” for its forces in Syria.

But the downing did not appear to hamper Syria, which attempted a similar bombing Tuesday, according to US military officials.

The US official told CNN that another Syrian Su-22 fighter made an approach Tuesday in what the military assessed as a possible bombing run on the SDF near the same area.

The official said that coalition aircraft made a show of force and conducted a warning maneuver, and the Syrian fighter jet then aborted its trajectory and left the area.

CNN’s Barbara Starr, Tim Lister and Elizabeth Roberts contributed to this report.

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Russian warships fire missiles at ISIS in Syria – CNN International

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‘Death to America, Death to Israel’: Iran Protesters Chant and Burn ISIS Flags in Tehran – Newsweek

Iran held its annual Quds Day marches across the country on Friday, with protesters burning the flag of the Islamic State militant group (ISIS) and chanting “Death to Israel” and “Death to America.”

Iran’s Revolutionary Guard displayed ballistic missiles to mark the day, showingoff the Zolfaghar missile that the military fired at ISIS positions in eastern Syria for the first time on Sunday.

The celebration is to rally for Al-Quds, the Arabic name for the city of Jerusalem, and protest Israel’s occupation of East Jerusalem and the West Bank in solidarity with the Palestinians.

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Protesters burned effigies of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu,held up critical posters showing him alongside U.S. President Donald Trump and Saudi Arabia’s King Salman, and carried banners that read “Israel should be wiped off the map.”

At the biggest march, inthe Iranian capital of Tehran, Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani, who called Israel “the mother of terrorism,” attended alongside Iranian President Hassan Rouhani.

“This year’s rally…shows people want our region to be cleaned up from terrorists, backed by the Zionist regime [Israel],” Rouhani toldstateTV.

Iranians hold images of U.S. President Donald Trump and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu adorned with Islamist-inspired bears during a rally marking Quds (Jerusalem) Day in Tehran on June 23. Chants against the Saudi royal family and the Islamic State group mingled with the traditional cries of “Death to Israel” and “Death to America” at Jerusalem Day rallies across Iran today. Stringer/AFP/Getty

Shia-majority Iran considers Israel to be its archenemy, and anti-Israel sentiment is widespread. The country supports Lebanese militant group Hezbollah and Palestinian militant group Hamas, whofought wars with Israel as recently as 2006 and 2014, respectively.

The protesters also targeted ISIS after it claimed a twin suicide-bombattack in Tehran that left 18people dead at the country’s parliament and the Mausoleum of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini.

Read more: ‘You call that a missile?’: Israel mocks Iran’s first strike on ISIS in Syria

The burning of the flags comes after the strikes against ISIS on Sunday. The Iranian military said it had killed more than 300 militants in the raid. But Israelis mocked the strike as failing to hit its target.

Israeli military chief Gadi Eisenkot said Tehran was lying about the strike.Their achievement was less than what was reported in the media. The strike manifested something, but it was far from a direct hit or what they have said, said Eisenkot during the Herzliya policy conference on Tuesday.

He said Iran was attempting to get more accurate rockets in its push for hegemony in the Middle East, but it was not there yet.

At least three of the seven ballistic missiles did not reach their intended targets, Israeli sources said in the Hebrew-language media, The Times of Israelreported.

Iran repeatedly threatens Israel with destruction and saysits missiles can reach Israeli territory. Israel says its ballistic missile program, and what it says are ambitions to obtain a nuclear weapon, threaten its national security.

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‘Death to America, Death to Israel’: Iran Protesters Chant and Burn ISIS Flags in Tehran – Newsweek

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Who Are the ISIS-linked Maute Group Militants Terrorizing the Philippines? – Newsweek

Before they formed one of the most dreaded militant groups in the Philippines and pledged loyalty to Islamic State militant group (ISIS), the Mautes were a wealthy, political family in the southern region of Mindanao, largely influenced by the matriarch, Farhana.

Soft-spoken and reserved, 60-year-old Farhana Maute owns property in Mindanao and in Manila, and runs a construction business, say people who know the family and security analysts who have scrutinized its background.

Debris and smoke are seen after an OV-10 Bronco aircraft released a bomb, during an airstrike, as government troops continue their assault against insurgents from the Maute group, who have taken over parts of Marawi city, Philippines June 23, 2017. REUTERS/Romeo Ranoco

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Almost unknown two years ago, the Mautes are now the biggest and most deadly among Islamic State groups in the southern Philippines and are at the forefront of a month-long battle with the military for control of Marawi, a Mindanao town. Regional governments fear that the brutal urban warfare, in which 360 people have been killed, reflects Islamic State’s intention to establish a caliphate in Southeast Asia.

Farhana Maute was related to politicians in her hometown of Butig, near Marawi, and was considered somewhat of a kingmaker because of her wealth and influence. And like many clans in the lawless area, the Mautes maintained a private militia that included Farhana’s seven sons, the analysts said.

When the Mautes got involved in a dispute with Butig Mayor Dimnatang Pansar over the award of civil contracts, it erupted into a brutal clan feud, a clash so common to Mindanao it has its own name, rido.

Other militant groups in the southern Philippines joined the Mautes, and they formed a joint front in Marawi against government troops.

Joseph Franco, a research fellow at Singapore’s S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies who has worked with several Philippine military chiefs, said that early last year, the Mautes projected themselves as followers of Islamic State, or IS, to “spook and coerce the Pansars”.

Members of the Philippine National Police (PNP) Special Action Force are onboard a military truck for reinforcements, as government forces continue their assault against insurgents from the Maute group, who have taken over large parts of Marawi City, Philippines June 19, 2017. REUTERS/Romeo Ranoco

“That tactical use of terrorist imagery took on a life of its own,” he said. “And now we have this Maute Group, who call themselves IS-Ranao.” Ranao is an old name for the Lanao region of Mindanao, where Marawi and Butig are located.

Although known to be a deeply religious Muslim, there was no evidence that Farhana Maute was radicalized, Franco said.

“She is only a businesswoman,” a former military officer who lives in Marawi told Reuters, speaking on condition of anonymity. “But, her clan was involved in a bitter political dispute with the mayor of Butig. And that probably got her into trouble.”

Two of the sons, Omarkhayam and Abdullah, had been educated in the Middle East, but it is uncertain when they morphed from being scions of a wealthy family to becoming hardened Islamists.

Still, Farhana Maute was related to the former military head of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), a rebel group that the government signed a peace deal with in 2014. She was deeply influenced by him, said Rommel Banlaoi, a security expert who advises the Philippines police.

“Many Muslims in Mindanao, strictly speaking, they already have what I call embedded radical ideas,” he said, adding that the Mautes provided a training camp for associates of the MILF near Butig.

“They were criminals who morphed into militancy,” Banlaoi said of the Mautes.

Other analysts said at least some of Farhana’s wealth would have been diverted to the Maute Group’s alleged illicit activities.

It was not possible to seek comment from the Maute family.

Both Farhana and her husband Cayamore, an engineer, were arrested earlier this month in separate parts of Mindanao and it was not immediately clear who their lawyers were.

The sons are believed to be fighting in Marawi.

A Philippine Marine fires his weapon toward the stronghold of Maute group in Marawi City, southern Philippines, May 31. Dozens of people are reported injured after an attack at a resort in Manila. An ISIS operative has claimed responsibility. Erik De Castro/Reuters

Islamic State’s news agency, Amaq, has said its fighters control large parts of Marawi City, but has not commented specifically on the Maute.

Mohamad Ampuan, a Marawi native who has settled in Manila, said he knew Farhana Maute and several of her sons, and believed they were primarily religious-minded. He said he had not seen any of them since 2010, when he moved north.

Ampuan was speaking in a bazaar selling mobile phones and accessories in the crowded Novaliches suburb of Manila, where Philippine military intelligence reports have said Farhana or some of her sons owned stalls. All the stall-owners in the Salam Bazaar are from Marawi, but Ampuan said the family did not own any property there.

He said Farhana was fluent in Arabic and English and he considered the Mautes a “royal family”.

“The Mautes are fighting for Allah,” he said. “They want a society faithful to Allah.”

Marawi residents and analysts said Farhana has considerable influence on her sons, perhaps more than her husband, Cayamore. He has two other wives.

“She is the central figure, but not in terms of planning and preparing attacks,” said Rohan Gunaratna, a regional counter-terrorism expert. “The mother and father are patrons of the group, but father less, mother more.”

A neighbor, Marawi city councillor Khana-Anuar Marabur Jr., said the Mautes were “good people back then”, before they started the current round of violence in Marawi.

He said Farhana was a good mother, and was generous and approachable.

“The father is strong,” Marabur said. “He is like the tiger. But someone owns the tiger.”

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Who Are the ISIS-linked Maute Group Militants Terrorizing the Philippines? – Newsweek

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ISIS urges attacks on Ramadan’s Night of Power, Islam’s …

Law enforcement officials around the world are onhigh alertthis week as ISIS calls for a surge of civilian attacks during Islams Night of Power, the holiest day on the Islamic calendar, which this year begins Wednesday evening.

Known in Arabic as Laylat al-Qadr, it marks the night during the holy month of Ramadan that Muslims believe the Prophet Muhammad received the first revelations of the Quran.

While the vast majority of Muslims consider the occasion as the best time in the year to pray for blessings and forgiveness, jihadist groups such as ISIS exploit the date to urge brutal acts of violence.

Last year, when the Night of Power fell on July 2, a widely shared message pushing for calamity everywhere for the nonbelievers, was delivered by ISIS. And that night there was a surge of deadly terror attacks.

In this Friday, Aug. 2, 2013 photo, a labor workers weeps during Friday payers in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Across Muslim world, families gather at sunset after the daylong fast during the holy month of Ramadan. In a parking lot in Dubai, a group of Muslim laborers from India separated from their homeland like millions of other workers across the Gulf join for a game of cricket and to swap stories late into the evening. (AP Photo/Kamran Jebreili) (AP2013)

ISIS operatives plunged into a foreigner-frequented restaurant in Dhaka, Bangladesh, and hacked 20 people to death when they were not able to recite verses from the Quran. On the same day, ISIS fighters detonated a massive truck bomb in a popular Baghdad shopping district, killing at least 200.

Pro-ISIS messages are said to be circling on encrypted apps such as Telegram this week, calling on Muslims to wake up, the war is starting, especially in the wake of Sundays mosque attack in London.

The pattern of jihadists using the Night of Power to attack has caused Western interests to take security precautions. Starting in 2013, many U.S. embassies across the Middle East started closing for the occasion and encouraging staff to remain indoors.

ISIS and other Islamists preach that the obligation of jihad is multiplied during Ramadan, as is the reward if you die carrying it out, Ryan Mauro, national security analyst at the Clarion Project, told Fox News.

So far during Ramadan this year, which will end Saturday, there have been a dozen Muslim terror attacks including at least 31 dead in aBaghdad ice-cream parlor bombing, a truck explosion inKabulthat killed 150, an attack on Irans Parliament and Ayatollah Khomeinis shrine inTehranthat left 12 dead and a further eight lives lost in aLondonBridge rampage.

ISIS USED MOSUL CHURCH TO ABUSE YAZIDI GIRLS, WOMEN, IRAQI ARMY OFFICER SAYS

ISRAEL GOODWILL RAMADAN EFFORTS CUT AFTER PALESTINIAN ATTACK

Robert Nicholson, executive director of The Philos Project, which focuses on religious engagement in the Middle East, cautioned that it is a mistake to associate this night with terrorism, but that there is always a chance that a malicious few will use it to amplify their terrorist acts.

It makes sense to elevate security precautions, but it is excessive and unhelpful to talk about it as a catalyst for terror. For the vast majority of Muslims, its just not, Nicholson told Fox News.

Nevertheless, as ISIS gets edged out of its Iraqi and Syrian hubs, its calls for violence abroad are getting louder.

Theyre under siege and getting desperate. That causes them to lash out where they can around the world, to hit their enemies on their own turf, Nicholson added. But it also inspires unaffiliated sympathizers living in foreign countries to act out their own acts of terror without any real direction from [the ISIS capital of] Raqqa. We may be able to take Raqqa and defeat ISIS, but the idea of ISIS the establishment of a caliphate and the restoration of Islam to its rightful place in the world will live on.

Hollie McKay has been a FoxNews.com staff reporter since 2007. She has reported extensively from the Middle East on the rise and fall of terrorist groups such as ISIS in Iraq. Follow her on twitter at @holliesmckay

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ISIS chief cleric, al-Baghdadi confidant, killed by US-led …

U.S.-led coalition forces said they have killed Turki al-Binali, ISIS’ chief cleric, in Syria airstrike last month.

Al-Bin’ali, who called himself “Grand Mufti,” was killed in an airstrike on May 31 in Mayadin, Syria, according to a news release from the Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve.

The cleric’s main role was recruiting extremists and causing terrorist attacks across the globe. Al-Bin’ali, who has been the terror group’s chief cleric since 2014, supplied propaganda encouraging murder and other atrocious acts. He tried to legitimize the formation of the so-called “caliphate” and was a close confidant of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the leader of the jihadi group.

The cleric’s recruiting efforts for the terrorist organization included many filmed lectures trying to condone and provoke the slaying of innocent people.

An ISIS fighter firing his weapon in Raqqa, Syria. (Militant Photo via AP)

The Bahraini cleric wrote religious justifications for the enslavement of thousands of women from Iraq’s Yazidi minority and helped establish the ISIS branch in Libya. He rose to be one of the extremist group’s leading ideologues.

Several senior Islamic State figures have been killed in recent years as the group has been driven from large parts of Syria and Iraq. U.S.-backed forces recently pushed into Raqqa, the northern Syrian city that served as the group’s de facto capital.

Fox News’ Jennifer Griffin and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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ISIS | Archer Wiki | Fandom powered by Wikia

The International Secret Intelligence Service (ISIS) is the workplace of the main characters of Archer. It is quite obviously a spy agency, with international offices (Mole Hunt).

ISIS Headquarters is located in New York City and operates above a wash & fold or as an urban legend experts say it; laundromat. Washing machines disguise the primary entrance, which is an elevator.

The security system at ISIS is depicted as weak. When Archer infiltrates the office during the night, he successfully enters the mainframe by using a registered voice of Cyril(“Mole Hunt”). The password “Guest” seems to be widely used to access the ISIS computers (“Mole Hunt,” “Training Day”).

ISIS was officially shut down by FBI in the episode “White Elephant”but is restored since the end of Archer Vice. Sadly, due to the events of “Drastic Voyage: Part II” this restoration was short-lived as the organization had been blacklisted by CIA, and those employed are unable to continue as spies. As a result, a few former ISIS employees, specifically Malory Archer and those close to her, formed a small detective agency, the Figgis Agency, with Cyril serving as CEO, due to him being the only one qualified.

In “Mole Hunt,” when Malory pulls up Archer’s personnel file to investigate his expense account, a list of agents appears on the right side of the screen. Below is a list of ISIS employees who haven’t been seen or identified throughout the course of the show, including:

In “The Double Deuce,” Pam puts together a tontine for a bunch of the ISIS employees. A few of those employees haven’t been seen or identified throughout the course of the show, including:

During “Jeu Monegasque,” Cyril pulls up a list of the ISIS 401(k) accounts, at least one of the ISIS employees listed is dead, agent Hector Ruiz. Some of the other listed employees have never been identified or seen throughout the course of the show, including:

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ISIS Destroys Historic Mosque In Mosul As Iraqi Forces Close In – NPR

The Great Mosque of al-Nuri in Mosul, with its tall, leaning al-Hadba minaret, was where ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi declared the group’s “caliphate” in Iraq and Syria in July 2014. Ahmad al-Rubaye/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

The Great Mosque of al-Nuri in Mosul, with its tall, leaning al-Hadba minaret, was where ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi declared the group’s “caliphate” in Iraq and Syria in July 2014.

Iraq’s military said ISIS destroyed the 12th century al-Nuri mosque in Mosul’s Old City, where ISIS fighters remain, on Wednesday.

The Great Mosque of al-Nuri, a medieval mosque with the tall, leaning al-Hadba minaret, was the site where ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi made a rare public appearance and, in July 2014, declared the group’s “caliphate” in Iraq and Syria.

“Daesh’s bombing of the al-Hadba minaret and the al-Nuri Mosque is a formal declaration of their defeat,” Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi tweeted, according to an Associated Press translation. Daesh is an Arabic acronym for the Islamic State group.

Iraq’s military said ISIS fighters used explosives to blow up the more than 800-year-old mosque, the AP reports.

“This is a crime against the people of Mosul and all of Iraq, and is an example of why this brutal organization must be annihilated,” Maj. Gen. Joseph Martin, who commands coalition ground forces in Iraq, said in a statement Wednesday.

ISIS media arm Amaq claimed a U.S. airstrike was responsible for the destruction. U.S. Army Col. Ryan Dillon told the AP that the U.S. “did not conduct strikes in that area at that time.”

The Iraqi military said its counterterrorism forces were within 165 feet of the mosque when it was destroyed. A video on social media shows what it says is the explosion.

Reuters provided some historical background for the al-Nuri mosque:

“The mosque was named after Nuruddin al-Zanki, a noble who fought the early crusaders from a fiefdom that covered territory in modern-day Turkey, Syria and Iraq. It was built in 1172-73, shortly before his death, and housed an Islamic school.

“By the time renowned medieval traveler and scholar Ibn Battuta visited two centuries later, the minaret was leaning. The tilt gave the landmark its popular name: the hunchback.”

ISIS militants have targeted other historic sites for destruction, including ancient outdoor structures and artifacts in museums in Syria.

ISIS forces have been driven from most of Mosul but still control about 1.5 square miles of the city, according to The Wall Street Journal. The mosque was in the Old City area, where remaining ISIS fighters are making a final stand with an estimated 100,000 civilians being used as human shields. Mosul is the last major city where ISIS controls territory in Iraq.

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Russia: "High" probability ISIS leader "liquidated" in strike – CBS News

ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi speaks at a mosque in Mosul, Iraq.

Last Updated Jun 22, 2017 10:04 AM EDT

LONDON — Russia’s Foreign Ministry said there was a “high degree of probability” that ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi was killed in an airstrike at the end of May.

Russia first claimed on June 16 that the leader of the so-called Islamic State (ISIS) was believed to have been killed a strike targeting a meeting of the group’s leaders just outside its de facto capital in Raqqa, Syria, but western officials cast doubt on the claim then.

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CBS News national security correspondant David Martin joins CBSN as the U.S. military looks into Russia’s claim that it may have killed ISIS lead…

On Thursday, U.S. officials told CBS News they still could not confirm the Russians’ claim, “based on what we have.” All U.S. government and military officials who spoke to CBS News said they had no reason to believe al-Baghdadi was dead.

The Kremlin’s apparent new level of certainty that al-Baghdadi was killed in the strike came from an interview that Deputy Foreign Minister Oleg Syromolotov gave to state news agency RIA Novosti.

“According to the Russian Defense Ministry, it can be said with a high degree of probability that the leader of ISIS, al-Baghdadi, was liquidated as the result of a strike by the Russian military” near the end of May. “This information is now being verified through various channels,” Syromolotov said. It wasn’t clear whether Syromolotov was alluding to new intelligence, or merely reiterating the Kremlin’s earlier suspicions of al-Baghdadi’s demise.

Hours earlier, during a daily briefing, a spokeswoman for the Foreign Ministry said she had no new information regarding al-Baghdadi’s condition.

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U.S.-backed forces in Syria and Iraq continue to gain ground on ISIS militants in the cities of Raqqa and Mosul. Jonathan Vigliotti reports.

One official noted that ISIS was undoubtedly being defeated on the battlefield in both Syria and Iraq, and that other groups and nations were keen to claim some responsibility for that defeat.

CBS News correspondent Margaret Brennan notes that Baghdadi hasn’t been heard from since late 2016. The ISIS leader has only appeared once in video, speaking to supporters in an iconic mosque in the heart of Mosul which, coincidentally, was destroyed by ISIS only on Wednesday as Iraqi forces had it surrounded. That appearance came in 2014, as Baghdadi established his self-proclaimed Muslim caliphate.

The last time Baghdadi released an audio message was Nov. 3, 2016, when he released an audio statement urging followers to continue to fight for Mosul.

2017 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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Sniper hits ISIS target from over 2 miles away – CNN

The unnamed marksman was part of Canada’s elite Joint Task Force 2 special operations unit that is currently deployed in an “advise and assist” capacity to help Iraqi security forces battle ISIS from behind the front line in Mosul. “The Canadian Special Operations Command can confirm that a member of the Joint Task Force 2 successfully hit a target from 3,540 meters. For operational security reasons and to preserve the safety of our personnel and our Coalition partners, we will not discuss precise details on when and how this incident took place,” the unit said in a written statement. Due to the distance of the shot, some voices in the military community expressed skepticism at the Canadian government’s report. The reported shot from 3,540 meters, or about 2.2 miles, would eclipse the previous sniper world record of 2,474 meters or 1.54 miles set by the United Kingdom’s Craig Harrison when he killed two Taliban insurgents in November 2009. “The elite sniper was using a McMillan TAC-50 sniper rifle while firing from a high-rise during an operation that took place within the last month in Iraq. It took under 10 seconds to hit the target,” the paper said. The Canadian military unit confirmed the distance of shot shortly after the Globe and Mail story was published, but the shot has yet to be formally confirmed a third party agency. In 2016, the Canadian government announced it would triple its training efforts in northern Iraq despite pulling out of the US-led ISIS bombing campaign the year before. In May, Iraqi forces began what they hope is the final push to crush ISIS in Mosul, Iraq’s second-largest city,

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Russian warships fire missiles at ISIS in Syria – CNN International

The Admiral Essen and Admiral Grigorovich frigates, along with the Krasnodar submarine, fired the cruise missiles from the Mediterranean Sea, the Defense Ministry said in a statement posted to state news agency RIA. ISIS command points and a weapons and ammunition depot were destroyed in Hama province of Syria, according to RIA. The ministry also said Turkey and Israel were informed about the missile launches, but made no mention of informing the US, which is leading an international coalition against ISIS in the country. The strike comes amid tensions after a US warplane downed Syrian jet, the first time the US has shot down a manned aircraft since 1999. Russia is the most powerful ally of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s regime, and the rare air-to-air encounter prompted Moscow to suspend a de-confliction hotline with the US-led coalition, designed to prevent any accidents in the skies over Syria. The Syrian conflict has transformed from a civil war to a more complex battle involving international players and their proxies. While international players are focused on targeting ISIS, many are maneuvering to either prop up or depose Assad and his regime. Iran, which also supports Assad, on Sunday fired missiles at ISIS targets in Syria, the first such strike carried out by Tehran on another country in three decades. It is a major escalation of Iran’s role in the war. Russia this week said it thinks one of its airstrikes may have killed ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghadi, a figure who has evaded international forces for years. But US officials told CNN that the US has not confirmed Russia’s claim. The US downed the Syrian warplane after a series of clashes between pro-regime troops and the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), which the US backs to fight ISIS. According to the Pentagon, Syrian regime soldiers equipped with tanks, artillery and technical vehicles were advancing on the US-backed rebels’ position, forcing the coalition to use the de-confliction hotline with the Russians in an attempt to turn the regime troops back. When that proved unsuccessful, coalition aircraft performed “strafing runs” near the regime positions, which halted their advance. The Russian Ministry of Defense called the downing of the plane “a cynical violation of the sovereignty of the Syrian Arab Republic” and “military aggression.” Russia has stopped using the de-confliction hotline, a US official said, and Moscow warned that aircraft operating where the shoot-down occurred would be considered “air targets” for its forces in Syria. But the downing did not appear to hamper Syria, which attempted a similar bombing Tuesday, according to US military officials. The US official told CNN that another Syrian Su-22 fighter made an approach Tuesday in what the military assessed as a possible bombing run on the SDF near the same area. The official said that coalition aircraft made a show of force and conducted a warning maneuver, and the Syrian fighter jet then aborted its trajectory and left the area. CNN’s Barbara Starr, Tim Lister and Elizabeth Roberts contributed to this report.

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June 23, 2017   Posted in: ISIS  Comments Closed

‘Death to America, Death to Israel’: Iran Protesters Chant and Burn ISIS Flags in Tehran – Newsweek

Iran held its annual Quds Day marches across the country on Friday, with protesters burning the flag of the Islamic State militant group (ISIS) and chanting “Death to Israel” and “Death to America.” Iran’s Revolutionary Guard displayed ballistic missiles to mark the day, showingoff the Zolfaghar missile that the military fired at ISIS positions in eastern Syria for the first time on Sunday. The celebration is to rally for Al-Quds, the Arabic name for the city of Jerusalem, and protest Israel’s occupation of East Jerusalem and the West Bank in solidarity with the Palestinians. Daily Emails and Alerts- Get the best of Newsweek delivered to your inbox Protesters burned effigies of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu,held up critical posters showing him alongside U.S. President Donald Trump and Saudi Arabia’s King Salman, and carried banners that read “Israel should be wiped off the map.” At the biggest march, inthe Iranian capital of Tehran, Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani, who called Israel “the mother of terrorism,” attended alongside Iranian President Hassan Rouhani. “This year’s rally…shows people want our region to be cleaned up from terrorists, backed by the Zionist regime [Israel],” Rouhani toldstateTV. Iranians hold images of U.S. President Donald Trump and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu adorned with Islamist-inspired bears during a rally marking Quds (Jerusalem) Day in Tehran on June 23. Chants against the Saudi royal family and the Islamic State group mingled with the traditional cries of “Death to Israel” and “Death to America” at Jerusalem Day rallies across Iran today. Stringer/AFP/Getty Shia-majority Iran considers Israel to be its archenemy, and anti-Israel sentiment is widespread. The country supports Lebanese militant group Hezbollah and Palestinian militant group Hamas, whofought wars with Israel as recently as 2006 and 2014, respectively. The protesters also targeted ISIS after it claimed a twin suicide-bombattack in Tehran that left 18people dead at the country’s parliament and the Mausoleum of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. Read more: ‘You call that a missile?’: Israel mocks Iran’s first strike on ISIS in Syria The burning of the flags comes after the strikes against ISIS on Sunday. The Iranian military said it had killed more than 300 militants in the raid. But Israelis mocked the strike as failing to hit its target. Israeli military chief Gadi Eisenkot said Tehran was lying about the strike.Their achievement was less than what was reported in the media. The strike manifested something, but it was far from a direct hit or what they have said, said Eisenkot during the Herzliya policy conference on Tuesday. He said Iran was attempting to get more accurate rockets in its push for hegemony in the Middle East, but it was not there yet. At least three of the seven ballistic missiles did not reach their intended targets, Israeli sources said in the Hebrew-language media, The Times of Israelreported. Iran repeatedly threatens Israel with destruction and saysits missiles can reach Israeli territory. Israel says its ballistic missile program, and what it says are ambitions to obtain a nuclear weapon, threaten its national security.

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June 23, 2017   Posted in: ISIS  Comments Closed

Who Are the ISIS-linked Maute Group Militants Terrorizing the Philippines? – Newsweek

Before they formed one of the most dreaded militant groups in the Philippines and pledged loyalty to Islamic State militant group (ISIS), the Mautes were a wealthy, political family in the southern region of Mindanao, largely influenced by the matriarch, Farhana. Soft-spoken and reserved, 60-year-old Farhana Maute owns property in Mindanao and in Manila, and runs a construction business, say people who know the family and security analysts who have scrutinized its background. Debris and smoke are seen after an OV-10 Bronco aircraft released a bomb, during an airstrike, as government troops continue their assault against insurgents from the Maute group, who have taken over parts of Marawi city, Philippines June 23, 2017. REUTERS/Romeo Ranoco Daily Emails and Alerts- Get the best of Newsweek delivered to your inbox Almost unknown two years ago, the Mautes are now the biggest and most deadly among Islamic State groups in the southern Philippines and are at the forefront of a month-long battle with the military for control of Marawi, a Mindanao town. Regional governments fear that the brutal urban warfare, in which 360 people have been killed, reflects Islamic State’s intention to establish a caliphate in Southeast Asia. Farhana Maute was related to politicians in her hometown of Butig, near Marawi, and was considered somewhat of a kingmaker because of her wealth and influence. And like many clans in the lawless area, the Mautes maintained a private militia that included Farhana’s seven sons, the analysts said. When the Mautes got involved in a dispute with Butig Mayor Dimnatang Pansar over the award of civil contracts, it erupted into a brutal clan feud, a clash so common to Mindanao it has its own name, rido. Other militant groups in the southern Philippines joined the Mautes, and they formed a joint front in Marawi against government troops. Joseph Franco, a research fellow at Singapore’s S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies who has worked with several Philippine military chiefs, said that early last year, the Mautes projected themselves as followers of Islamic State, or IS, to “spook and coerce the Pansars”. Members of the Philippine National Police (PNP) Special Action Force are onboard a military truck for reinforcements, as government forces continue their assault against insurgents from the Maute group, who have taken over large parts of Marawi City, Philippines June 19, 2017. REUTERS/Romeo Ranoco “That tactical use of terrorist imagery took on a life of its own,” he said. “And now we have this Maute Group, who call themselves IS-Ranao.” Ranao is an old name for the Lanao region of Mindanao, where Marawi and Butig are located. Although known to be a deeply religious Muslim, there was no evidence that Farhana Maute was radicalized, Franco said. “She is only a businesswoman,” a former military officer who lives in Marawi told Reuters, speaking on condition of anonymity. “But, her clan was involved in a bitter political dispute with the mayor of Butig. And that probably got her into trouble.” Two of the sons, Omarkhayam and Abdullah, had been educated in the Middle East, but it is uncertain when they morphed from being scions of a wealthy family to becoming hardened Islamists. Still, Farhana Maute was related to the former military head of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), a rebel group that the government signed a peace deal with in 2014. She was deeply influenced by him, said Rommel Banlaoi, a security expert who advises the Philippines police. “Many Muslims in Mindanao, strictly speaking, they already have what I call embedded radical ideas,” he said, adding that the Mautes provided a training camp for associates of the MILF near Butig. “They were criminals who morphed into militancy,” Banlaoi said of the Mautes. Other analysts said at least some of Farhana’s wealth would have been diverted to the Maute Group’s alleged illicit activities. It was not possible to seek comment from the Maute family. Both Farhana and her husband Cayamore, an engineer, were arrested earlier this month in separate parts of Mindanao and it was not immediately clear who their lawyers were. The sons are believed to be fighting in Marawi. A Philippine Marine fires his weapon toward the stronghold of Maute group in Marawi City, southern Philippines, May 31. Dozens of people are reported injured after an attack at a resort in Manila. An ISIS operative has claimed responsibility. Erik De Castro/Reuters Islamic State’s news agency, Amaq, has said its fighters control large parts of Marawi City, but has not commented specifically on the Maute. Mohamad Ampuan, a Marawi native who has settled in Manila, said he knew Farhana Maute and several of her sons, and believed they were primarily religious-minded. He said he had not seen any of them since 2010, when he moved north. Ampuan was speaking in a bazaar selling mobile phones and accessories in the crowded Novaliches suburb of Manila, where Philippine military intelligence reports have said Farhana or some of her sons owned stalls. All the stall-owners in the Salam Bazaar are from Marawi, but Ampuan said the family did not own any property there. He said Farhana was fluent in Arabic and English and he considered the Mautes a “royal family”. “The Mautes are fighting for Allah,” he said. “They want a society faithful to Allah.” Marawi residents and analysts said Farhana has considerable influence on her sons, perhaps more than her husband, Cayamore. He has two other wives. “She is the central figure, but not in terms of planning and preparing attacks,” said Rohan Gunaratna, a regional counter-terrorism expert. “The mother and father are patrons of the group, but father less, mother more.” A neighbor, Marawi city councillor Khana-Anuar Marabur Jr., said the Mautes were “good people back then”, before they started the current round of violence in Marawi. He said Farhana was a good mother, and was generous and approachable. “The father is strong,” Marabur said. “He is like the tiger. But someone owns the tiger.”

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June 23, 2017   Posted in: ISIS  Comments Closed

ISIS urges attacks on Ramadan’s Night of Power, Islam’s …

Law enforcement officials around the world are onhigh alertthis week as ISIS calls for a surge of civilian attacks during Islams Night of Power, the holiest day on the Islamic calendar, which this year begins Wednesday evening. Known in Arabic as Laylat al-Qadr, it marks the night during the holy month of Ramadan that Muslims believe the Prophet Muhammad received the first revelations of the Quran. While the vast majority of Muslims consider the occasion as the best time in the year to pray for blessings and forgiveness, jihadist groups such as ISIS exploit the date to urge brutal acts of violence. Last year, when the Night of Power fell on July 2, a widely shared message pushing for calamity everywhere for the nonbelievers, was delivered by ISIS. And that night there was a surge of deadly terror attacks. In this Friday, Aug. 2, 2013 photo, a labor workers weeps during Friday payers in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Across Muslim world, families gather at sunset after the daylong fast during the holy month of Ramadan. In a parking lot in Dubai, a group of Muslim laborers from India separated from their homeland like millions of other workers across the Gulf join for a game of cricket and to swap stories late into the evening. (AP Photo/Kamran Jebreili) (AP2013) ISIS operatives plunged into a foreigner-frequented restaurant in Dhaka, Bangladesh, and hacked 20 people to death when they were not able to recite verses from the Quran. On the same day, ISIS fighters detonated a massive truck bomb in a popular Baghdad shopping district, killing at least 200. Pro-ISIS messages are said to be circling on encrypted apps such as Telegram this week, calling on Muslims to wake up, the war is starting, especially in the wake of Sundays mosque attack in London. The pattern of jihadists using the Night of Power to attack has caused Western interests to take security precautions. Starting in 2013, many U.S. embassies across the Middle East started closing for the occasion and encouraging staff to remain indoors. ISIS and other Islamists preach that the obligation of jihad is multiplied during Ramadan, as is the reward if you die carrying it out, Ryan Mauro, national security analyst at the Clarion Project, told Fox News. So far during Ramadan this year, which will end Saturday, there have been a dozen Muslim terror attacks including at least 31 dead in aBaghdad ice-cream parlor bombing, a truck explosion inKabulthat killed 150, an attack on Irans Parliament and Ayatollah Khomeinis shrine inTehranthat left 12 dead and a further eight lives lost in aLondonBridge rampage. ISIS USED MOSUL CHURCH TO ABUSE YAZIDI GIRLS, WOMEN, IRAQI ARMY OFFICER SAYS ISRAEL GOODWILL RAMADAN EFFORTS CUT AFTER PALESTINIAN ATTACK Robert Nicholson, executive director of The Philos Project, which focuses on religious engagement in the Middle East, cautioned that it is a mistake to associate this night with terrorism, but that there is always a chance that a malicious few will use it to amplify their terrorist acts. It makes sense to elevate security precautions, but it is excessive and unhelpful to talk about it as a catalyst for terror. For the vast majority of Muslims, its just not, Nicholson told Fox News. Nevertheless, as ISIS gets edged out of its Iraqi and Syrian hubs, its calls for violence abroad are getting louder. Theyre under siege and getting desperate. That causes them to lash out where they can around the world, to hit their enemies on their own turf, Nicholson added. But it also inspires unaffiliated sympathizers living in foreign countries to act out their own acts of terror without any real direction from [the ISIS capital of] Raqqa. We may be able to take Raqqa and defeat ISIS, but the idea of ISIS the establishment of a caliphate and the restoration of Islam to its rightful place in the world will live on. Hollie McKay has been a FoxNews.com staff reporter since 2007. She has reported extensively from the Middle East on the rise and fall of terrorist groups such as ISIS in Iraq. Follow her on twitter at @holliesmckay

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June 22, 2017   Posted in: ISIS  Comments Closed

ISIS chief cleric, al-Baghdadi confidant, killed by US-led …

U.S.-led coalition forces said they have killed Turki al-Binali, ISIS’ chief cleric, in Syria airstrike last month. Al-Bin’ali, who called himself “Grand Mufti,” was killed in an airstrike on May 31 in Mayadin, Syria, according to a news release from the Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve. The cleric’s main role was recruiting extremists and causing terrorist attacks across the globe. Al-Bin’ali, who has been the terror group’s chief cleric since 2014, supplied propaganda encouraging murder and other atrocious acts. He tried to legitimize the formation of the so-called “caliphate” and was a close confidant of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the leader of the jihadi group. The cleric’s recruiting efforts for the terrorist organization included many filmed lectures trying to condone and provoke the slaying of innocent people. An ISIS fighter firing his weapon in Raqqa, Syria. (Militant Photo via AP) The Bahraini cleric wrote religious justifications for the enslavement of thousands of women from Iraq’s Yazidi minority and helped establish the ISIS branch in Libya. He rose to be one of the extremist group’s leading ideologues. Several senior Islamic State figures have been killed in recent years as the group has been driven from large parts of Syria and Iraq. U.S.-backed forces recently pushed into Raqqa, the northern Syrian city that served as the group’s de facto capital. Fox News’ Jennifer Griffin and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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June 22, 2017   Posted in: ISIS  Comments Closed

ISIS | Archer Wiki | Fandom powered by Wikia

The International Secret Intelligence Service (ISIS) is the workplace of the main characters of Archer. It is quite obviously a spy agency, with international offices (Mole Hunt). ISIS Headquarters is located in New York City and operates above a wash & fold or as an urban legend experts say it; laundromat. Washing machines disguise the primary entrance, which is an elevator. The security system at ISIS is depicted as weak. When Archer infiltrates the office during the night, he successfully enters the mainframe by using a registered voice of Cyril(“Mole Hunt”). The password “Guest” seems to be widely used to access the ISIS computers (“Mole Hunt,” “Training Day”). ISIS was officially shut down by FBI in the episode “White Elephant”but is restored since the end of Archer Vice. Sadly, due to the events of “Drastic Voyage: Part II” this restoration was short-lived as the organization had been blacklisted by CIA, and those employed are unable to continue as spies. As a result, a few former ISIS employees, specifically Malory Archer and those close to her, formed a small detective agency, the Figgis Agency, with Cyril serving as CEO, due to him being the only one qualified. In “Mole Hunt,” when Malory pulls up Archer’s personnel file to investigate his expense account, a list of agents appears on the right side of the screen. Below is a list of ISIS employees who haven’t been seen or identified throughout the course of the show, including: In “The Double Deuce,” Pam puts together a tontine for a bunch of the ISIS employees. A few of those employees haven’t been seen or identified throughout the course of the show, including: During “Jeu Monegasque,” Cyril pulls up a list of the ISIS 401(k) accounts, at least one of the ISIS employees listed is dead, agent Hector Ruiz. Some of the other listed employees have never been identified or seen throughout the course of the show, including:

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June 22, 2017   Posted in: ISIS  Comments Closed

ISIS Destroys Historic Mosque In Mosul As Iraqi Forces Close In – NPR

The Great Mosque of al-Nuri in Mosul, with its tall, leaning al-Hadba minaret, was where ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi declared the group’s “caliphate” in Iraq and Syria in July 2014. Ahmad al-Rubaye/AFP/Getty Images hide caption The Great Mosque of al-Nuri in Mosul, with its tall, leaning al-Hadba minaret, was where ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi declared the group’s “caliphate” in Iraq and Syria in July 2014. Iraq’s military said ISIS destroyed the 12th century al-Nuri mosque in Mosul’s Old City, where ISIS fighters remain, on Wednesday. The Great Mosque of al-Nuri, a medieval mosque with the tall, leaning al-Hadba minaret, was the site where ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi made a rare public appearance and, in July 2014, declared the group’s “caliphate” in Iraq and Syria. “Daesh’s bombing of the al-Hadba minaret and the al-Nuri Mosque is a formal declaration of their defeat,” Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi tweeted, according to an Associated Press translation. Daesh is an Arabic acronym for the Islamic State group. Iraq’s military said ISIS fighters used explosives to blow up the more than 800-year-old mosque, the AP reports. “This is a crime against the people of Mosul and all of Iraq, and is an example of why this brutal organization must be annihilated,” Maj. Gen. Joseph Martin, who commands coalition ground forces in Iraq, said in a statement Wednesday. ISIS media arm Amaq claimed a U.S. airstrike was responsible for the destruction. U.S. Army Col. Ryan Dillon told the AP that the U.S. “did not conduct strikes in that area at that time.” The Iraqi military said its counterterrorism forces were within 165 feet of the mosque when it was destroyed. A video on social media shows what it says is the explosion. Reuters provided some historical background for the al-Nuri mosque: “The mosque was named after Nuruddin al-Zanki, a noble who fought the early crusaders from a fiefdom that covered territory in modern-day Turkey, Syria and Iraq. It was built in 1172-73, shortly before his death, and housed an Islamic school. “By the time renowned medieval traveler and scholar Ibn Battuta visited two centuries later, the minaret was leaning. The tilt gave the landmark its popular name: the hunchback.” ISIS militants have targeted other historic sites for destruction, including ancient outdoor structures and artifacts in museums in Syria. ISIS forces have been driven from most of Mosul but still control about 1.5 square miles of the city, according to The Wall Street Journal. The mosque was in the Old City area, where remaining ISIS fighters are making a final stand with an estimated 100,000 civilians being used as human shields. Mosul is the last major city where ISIS controls territory in Iraq.

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June 22, 2017   Posted in: ISIS  Comments Closed

Russia: "High" probability ISIS leader "liquidated" in strike – CBS News

ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi speaks at a mosque in Mosul, Iraq. Last Updated Jun 22, 2017 10:04 AM EDT LONDON — Russia’s Foreign Ministry said there was a “high degree of probability” that ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi was killed in an airstrike at the end of May. Russia first claimed on June 16 that the leader of the so-called Islamic State (ISIS) was believed to have been killed a strike targeting a meeting of the group’s leaders just outside its de facto capital in Raqqa, Syria, but western officials cast doubt on the claim then. Play Video CBS News national security correspondant David Martin joins CBSN as the U.S. military looks into Russia’s claim that it may have killed ISIS lead… On Thursday, U.S. officials told CBS News they still could not confirm the Russians’ claim, “based on what we have.” All U.S. government and military officials who spoke to CBS News said they had no reason to believe al-Baghdadi was dead. The Kremlin’s apparent new level of certainty that al-Baghdadi was killed in the strike came from an interview that Deputy Foreign Minister Oleg Syromolotov gave to state news agency RIA Novosti. “According to the Russian Defense Ministry, it can be said with a high degree of probability that the leader of ISIS, al-Baghdadi, was liquidated as the result of a strike by the Russian military” near the end of May. “This information is now being verified through various channels,” Syromolotov said. It wasn’t clear whether Syromolotov was alluding to new intelligence, or merely reiterating the Kremlin’s earlier suspicions of al-Baghdadi’s demise. Hours earlier, during a daily briefing, a spokeswoman for the Foreign Ministry said she had no new information regarding al-Baghdadi’s condition. Play Video U.S.-backed forces in Syria and Iraq continue to gain ground on ISIS militants in the cities of Raqqa and Mosul. Jonathan Vigliotti reports. One official noted that ISIS was undoubtedly being defeated on the battlefield in both Syria and Iraq, and that other groups and nations were keen to claim some responsibility for that defeat. CBS News correspondent Margaret Brennan notes that Baghdadi hasn’t been heard from since late 2016. The ISIS leader has only appeared once in video, speaking to supporters in an iconic mosque in the heart of Mosul which, coincidentally, was destroyed by ISIS only on Wednesday as Iraqi forces had it surrounded. That appearance came in 2014, as Baghdadi established his self-proclaimed Muslim caliphate. The last time Baghdadi released an audio message was Nov. 3, 2016, when he released an audio statement urging followers to continue to fight for Mosul. 2017 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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June 22, 2017   Posted in: ISIS  Comments Closed


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