US Says ISIL's Second-in-Command Killed
TEHRAN (Tasnim) – The second-in-command of the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) terrorist group was killed during a US air strike in Iraq on Tuesday, the White House has claimed.
The US and its allies stage daily air strikes on ISIL targets in the group's self-declared caliphate based in Iraq and Syria.
A drone strike last month killed a senior leader in its Syrian stronghold of Raqqa.
"Fadhil Ahmad al-Hayali, also known as Hajji Mutazz ... was killed in a US military air strike on August 18 while travelling in a vehicle near Mosul, Iraq, along with an ISIL media operative known as Abu Abdullah," Ned Price, White House spokesman, said in a statement on Friday, Al Jazeera reported.
"(His) death will adversely impact ISIL's operations given that his influence spanned ISIL's finance, media, operations, and logistics."
The White House said Hayali was a "primary coordinator" for moving weapons, explosives, vehicles, and people between Iraq and Syria.
He was in charge of operations in Iraq and helped plan the group's offensive in Mosul in June of last year, the White House said.
Mutazz was a lieutenant-colonel in the army of deposed leader Saddam Hussein and, like many who later went on to form the core of ISIL's leadership, was detained by US troops in Iraq at the Camp Bucca detention facility, according to US counterrorism experts.