A British war monitoring group called the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says it has “confirmed information” that ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi is dead.
The report comes after Russia had claimed they may have killed the self proclaimed “Caliph” Baghdadi after airstrikes in the city of Raqqa in June.
“(We have) confirmed information from leaders, including one of the first rank who is Syrian, in the Islamic State in the eastern countryside of Deir al-Zor,” said Rami Abdulrahman – director of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.
The observatory says the exact date and circumstances of Baghdadi’s alleged death are not yet known.
Neither the United States, Iraq, or Kurdish military officials have confirmed reports of Baghdadi’s death.
As noted by Reuters, “Baghdadi’s death has been announced many times before, but the Observatory has a record of credible reporting on the Syrian conflict. Islamic State-affiliated websites and social media feeds have so far said nothing.”
ISIS losing territory
The reports of Baghdadi’s death comes as the Islamic State has been losing territory in both Syria and Iraq as they come under attack from a large coalition of forces. However, defeats on the battlefield have often led ISIS to step up attacks against civilians in the Western world. As a result, the more territory ISIS loses, the more our leaders will have to take the threat of Islamist terror seriously. Complacency is not an option in these dangerous times.