Iraq kills Islamic State leader in the country

After the double suicide attack in Baghdad, the Iraqi prime minister announced the death of the jihadist group's leader
Atalayar_PM Irak Mustafa al-Kazemi

REUTERS/THAIER al-SUDANI  -   Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kazemi in Mandali

The jihadist group Islamic State (IS) has once again attacked the heart of Iraq, Baghdad. The IS group has carried out dozens of attacks in recent months, but it has been more than a year since the capital was the scene of such operations. Iraq, which declared victory against the caliphate at the end of 2017, is once again in an uncomfortable position, as it sees how the radicals are reorganising and presenting themselves as an increasingly real threat.

Baghdad has once again experienced the terror of a terrorist attack, a double suicide bombing in a market in the capital that left at least 32 dead and more than 100 wounded, with IS claiming responsibility shortly afterwards.

A week after this attack, the Iraqi government and the international coalition led by the United States announced the death of Abu Yasser al-Issawi, the highest ranking member of the Jihadist group in the country. Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhemi confirmed that the leader of IS in Iraq, Abu Yasser al-Issawi, was killed in an "operation led by the intelligence services" of the Iraqi security forces.

The prime minister stressed his commitment to fight Islamic terrorism, "We promised and we kept our word. I gave my word to pursue Daesh terrorists, we gave them a thunderous response," he wrote on Twitter.

Meanwhile, coalition spokesman Wayne Marotto also confirmed the news of the death of the leader of the Islamic State in Iraq, via his social networks, "Abu Yasser, the top leader of the Islamic State in Iraq, was killed in a bombing near Kirkuk on 27 January", and also reported the death of ten other IS terrorists during the attack.

Marotto welcomed the coalition's efforts and said it "will continue to eliminate key leaders from the battlefield and degrade the terrorist organisation". "Yasser's death is another significant blow to Islamic State's efforts to re-emerge in Iraq," he said.

Abu Yasser Al-Issawi had been identified last year by leading extremist experts as the most senior Islamic State official in the country. He rose to that rank after fighting with the militant faction in both Iraq and neighbouring Syria, security sources told AFP.

The death of the Islamic State leader in Iraq is a major blow to the organisation, which is in a reorganisation phase, taking advantage of the political chaos in the country and the departure of US military personnel, who have been reduced to 2,500 men as of this month.