ISIS on Thursday confirmed the death of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi and named Abu Ibrahim al-Hashimi al-Qurayshi as its new leader, according to the BBC.
The terror group also confirmed spokesman Abu Hassan al-Muhajir, who had been considered a potential heir to al-Baghdadi, had been killed in a separate joint operation between U.S. and Kurdish forces on Oct. 27.
President Trump announced al-Baghdadi’s death Sunday morning, saying the ISIS leader was killed in a raid on his compound in Idlib province in northern Syria after fleeing into a tunnel and detonating a suicide vest. U.S. forces have said al-Baghdadi killed two children in the blast, and the Pentagon has confirmed many of the details surrounding his death.
Syrian Democratic Council (SDC) representative Ilham Ahmed said Thursday that fighting in northern Syria had delayed the operation as a result of Turkish forces invading the region after U.S. troops left.
“The killing of Baghdadi was going to happen in a sooner time than it happened … but was delayed because of the Turkish incursion. We have a list of targets, ISIS targets, evidence on many individuals of ISIS, however due to the Turkish incursion our operations might be delayed. Our forces will be incapable to fight on multiple fronts.” Ahmed said during a press briefing at SDC headquarters in Washington, D.C.