US operation in Idlib (Syria) against the leader of the jihadist group Islamic State, Abú Bakr al Baghdadi – TWITTER ACCOUNT OF THE US CENTCOM (@CENTCOM)
MADRID, Oct. 30 (EUROPE PRESS) –
The United States Army published on Wednesday the first images of the operation carried out on Saturday by its special forces against the leader of the Islamic State, Abu Bakr al Baghdadi, who was immolated inside the complex where he lived.
The United States Central Command (CENTCOM) has published several videos about the operation, carried out in the town of Barisha, located in the Syrian province of Idlib (northwest) and near the border with Turkey.
In one of these videos, published through the CENTCOM account on the social network Twitter, you can see US forces approaching the complex from two directions at the beginning of the assault.
CENTCOM commander Frank McKenzie, who spearheaded the operation, said in a press appearance that “as a symbolic founder and self-proclaimed leader of the murderous terrorist gang that came to control a large territory between Iraq and Syria, and by the commission of unspeakable atrocities there and abroad, Al Baghdadi was a priority objective. ”
“Al Baghdadi was the target of an attempted inter-agency effort to bring him to justice, and this effort advanced significantly, when we approached his whereabouts,” he said, before adding that the information obtained about his whereabouts led Washington to “Develop an executive plan designed to capture or kill him.”
Thus, he said that the operation was approved by the Secretary of Defense, Mark Esper, and the chief of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of the United States, General Mike Milley, who subsequently informed the President Donald Trump “extensively” .
“The general lines of the mission was an assault with helicopters by special forces,” he said, although he stressed that “the plan was significantly more complex than that and was designed to avoid being detected by the Islamic State and others before and during its execution and avoid civilian casualties. ”
McKenzie said that the plan took into account the probability that there were “many children” inside the complex. “We adopt measures to minimize innocent victims,” he said.
In this regard, he pointed out that the operation was launched after informing the governments of Russia and Turkey to avoid bilateral incidents during the operation and reduce the risks to which the US special forces were exposed.
After showing an aerial photograph of the place, he pointed out that “around the complex, combatants began to open fire from two locations against the aircraft participating in the assault.”
“Those who left the complex were frisked to see if they carried weapons or explosives and were removed from the immediate area,” said McKenzie, who added that US forces “repeatedly asked that those inside were to leave peacefully.” .
“The US forces arrested and subsequently released the non-combatants. The group was treated at all times in a humane manner and included eleven children,” he said.
McKenzie has said that “despite the high pressure and nature of this assault, every effort was made to avoid civilian casualties and protect children suspected of being inside the complex.”
Thus, he has indicated that “five members of the Islamic State that were within the complex presented a threat to the force and did not respond to the requests in Arabic to surrender, so there was a confrontation and they died.” “There were four women and one man,” he said.
“Inside the complex, US forces discovered Al Baghdadi inside a tunnel. When his capture at the hands of the US forces was imminent, Al Baghdadi activated a bomb that carried, killing and killing two children who were with him,” he said. indicated.
“After the suicide of Al Baghdadi, our assault force cleared the debris of the tunnel and secured the remains of Al Baghdadi for DNA confirmation,” he said, before reiterating that the remains were “buried in the sea, according to the Law of Armed Conflict and within the first 24 hours after his death. ”
McKenzie has stated that “this operation was planned and executed exquisitely” and “demonstrates the global reach of the United States and its unwavering commitment to destroy the United States.”
A third video published by CENTOM shows a bombing subsequently carried out by US forces to destroy the arsenal of weapons inside the complex.
Finally, images of before and after installations have been declassified, as well as photographs of a dog that was injured during the operation.