ISIS names new leader and confirms Baghdadi’s death
The group named Abu Ibrahim al-Hashimi al-Qurayshi as its new leader, according to a statement distributed by Al-Furqan, the group's media wing.
In the sound recording released from the Telegram messaging app channels close to ISIL, Abu Hamza al-Qurayshi, terror group's so-called new spokesman, confirmed the death of al-Baghdadi and Abu al-Hassan al-Muhajir, former spokesman of ISIL.
U.S. President Donald Trump announced al-Baghdadi's death on Oct. 27 following a late-night special operation raid in northwestern Syria's Idlib province.
Under Baghdadi, ISIL spread over wide segments of Iraq and Syria beginning in 2013, eventually claiming the formation of a "caliphate" in the region as it plotted and carried out gruesome attacks that reached far beyond its main territorial bastion.
It further set up local affiliates in other regions as it released heinous execution videos on to the internet.
Baghdadi had been a top target for both the Trump and Obama administrations, and had a $25 million bounty placed on his head.
As the U.S.-led coalition took back territories once under the terror group's hold, Baghdadi increasingly stayed in the shadows, only rarely releasing pre-recorded audio messages to his followers.