US News Turkey ‘captures sister of killed Islamic State leader’
Islamic State defector inside Baghdadi’s hideout critical to success of raid, officials say
The informant, whose nationality has not revealed, is expected to receive some or all of the $25 million bounty that had been placed on Baghdadi’s head, according to the officials. One official said he was a Sunni Arab who turned against the Islamic State because one of his relatives had been killed by the group.
Turkey has captured the older sister of the killed leader of the so-called Islamic State group in north-western Syria, a senior official said, calling the arrest an intelligence “gold mine”.
Little is known about the sister of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, but the Turkish official said the 65-year-old known as Rasmiya Awad is suspected of being affiliated with the extremist group.
Awad was captured in a raid on Monday evening on a trailer container she was living in with her family near the town of Azaz in Aleppo province.
The area is part of the region administered by Turkey after it carried out a military incursion to oust IS militants and Kurdish fighters starting in 2016. Allied Syrian groups manage the area known as the Euphrates Shield zone.
As Kurds Tracked ISIS Leader, U.S. Withdrawal Threw Raid Into Turmoil
As Kurds Tracked ISIS Leader, U.S. Withdrawal Threw Raid Into TurmoilThe American allies, a Kurdish-led force that had partnered with the United States to fight ISIS, sent spies to watch his isolated villa. To confirm it was him, they stole a pair of Mr. al-Baghdadi’s underwear — long, white boxers — and obtained a blood sample, both for DNA testing, the force’s commander, Mazlum Abdi, said in a phone interview on Monday.
The official said the sister was with her husband, daughter-in-law and five children. The adults are being interrogated, he said.
“This kind of thing is an intelligence gold mine. What she knows about (IS) can significantly expand our understanding of the group and help us catch more bad guys,” the official said.
Al-Baghdadi, an Iraqi from Samarra, was killed in a US raid in the nearby province of Idlib last month.
The raid was a major blow to IS, which has lost territories it held in Syria and Iraq in a series of military defeats by the USled coalition and Syrian and Iraqi allies.
Many IS members escaped through smuggling routes to north-western Syria in the final days of battle ahead of the group’s territorial defeat earlier this year, while others have melted into the desert in Syria or Iraq.
The reclusive al-Baghdadi was known to be close to one of his brothers, known as Abu Hamza.
Al-Baghdadi’s aide, a Saudi, was killed hours after the raid, also in north-western Syria, in a US strike. The group named a successor to al-Baghdadi days later, but little is known about him or how the group’s structure has been affected by the successive blows.
The ‘Whimpering’ Terrorist Only Trump Seems to Have Heard .
The ‘Whimpering’ Terrorist Only Trump Seems to Have HeardIn the days since President Trump gave the world a graphic account of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi’s last minutes, no evidence has emerged to confirm it. The secretary of defense, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the regional commander who oversaw the operation that killed the leader of the Islamic State all say they have no idea what the president was talking about.
Character Study: ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi
The National Post's backgrounder on a newsmaker.
Daesh second-in-command killed in Iraqi air strike
Ayad al-Jumaili, believed to be a deputy of Daesh leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, was killed in an air strike on Friday. Ammar Karim reports.