By Dan Wooding, Founder of the ASSIST News Service
BAGHDAD, IRAQ (ANS – Dec. 10, 2015) — The finance chief of the so-called Islamic State, also known as ISIS, has been killed in air strikes by the US-led coalition, a US military spokesman has said.
According to the BBC, Muwaffaq Mustafa Mohammed al-Karmoush, aka Abu Salah, and two other senior leaders were killed in the strikes which took place in “recent weeks.”
No further details were given.
“The coalition has been carrying out air strikes against IS militants in Iraq and Syria for over a year. One recently also killed an IS leader in Libya,” said the BBC.
US military spokesman Col Steve Warren confirmed the deaths in a video call from the Iraqi capital, Baghdad.
Abu Salah is the code name for Muwaffaq Mustafa Mohammed al-Karmoush, and he appears on the US Treasury’s Counter Terrorism Designations list setting out sanctioned individuals.
It lists him as an Iraqi national who was born in 1973.
Col Warren called Abu Salah “one of the most senior and experienced members” of the militant group’s financial network.
“Killing him and his predecessors exhausts the knowledge and talent needed to co-ordinate funding within the organization,” Col Warren said.
The BBC reports that he said the other leaders killed were Abu Mariam, a senior chief responsible for extortion activities, and Abu Waqman al-Tunis, who coordinated the transfer of people, weapons and information.
On Twitter, Brett McGurk, special US presidential envoy for the global coalition to counter IS, said the three were killed “as part of the coalition campaign to destroy Isil’s (Islamic State’s) financial infrastructure.”
On Monday, the Pentagon confirmed a US air strike had killed a senior IS leader in Libya.
Abu Nabil died after an F-15 jet targeted a compound in the eastern city of Derna on November 13, 2015, it said.
What is ‘Islamic State’? (BBC)
The jihadist group Islamic State (IS) burst on to the international scene in 2014 when it seized large swathes of territory in Syria and Iraq. It has become notorious for its brutality, including mass killings, abductions and beheadings. The group though has attracted support elsewhere in the Muslim world – and a US-led coalition has vowed to destroy it.
What does IS want?
In June 2014, the group formally declared the establishment of a “caliphate” – a state governed in accordance with Islamic law, or Sharia, by God’s deputy on Earth, or caliph.
It has demanded that Muslims across the world swear allegiance to its leader – Ibrahim Awad Ibrahim al-Badri al-Samarrai, better known as Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi – and migrate to territory under its control.
IS has also told other jihadist groups worldwide that they must accept its supreme authority. Many already have, among them several offshoots of the rival al-Qaeda network.
IS seeks to eradicate obstacles to restoring God’s rule on Earth and to defend the Muslim community, or umma, against infidels and apostates.
The group has welcomed the prospect of direct confrontation with the US-led coalition, viewing it as a harbinger of an end-of-times showdown between Muslims and their enemies described in Islamic apocalyptic prophecies.
Photo captions: 1) The Pentagon on Monday confirmed a strike had killed Abu Nabil in Libya (AFP) 2) Islamic State fighters. 3) Dan Wooding pictured outside the Kurdistan Parliament in Erbil, Northern Iraq.
About the writer: Dan Wooding, 74, is an award-winning author, broadcaster and journalist who was born in Nigeria of British missionary parents, and is now living in Southern California with his wife Norma, to whom he has been married for 52 years. They have two sons, Andrew and Peter, and six grandchildren who all live in the UK. He is the author of some 45 books and has two TV programs and one radio show in Southern California. Dan has widely reported for ANS from all over the Middle East.
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