Islamic State group names its new leader as Abu Ibrahim al-Hashemi

The jihadist group Islamic State (IS) has for the first time confirmed the death of its leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, and named his successor.

 

An IS outlet announced on the messaging service Telegram that Abu Ibrahim al-Hashemi al-Qurashi was the group’s new leader and “caliph”.

US special forces tracked down Baghdadi in north-west Syria at the weekend and attacked his compound.

The IS leader fled into a tunnel and killed himself with a suicide vest.

The Iraqi had a $25m (£19m) bounty on his head and had been pursued by the US and its allies since the rise of IS five years ago.

IS also confirmed on Thursday the death of spokesman Abu al-Hasan al-Muhajir – who was killed in a joint operation in northern Syria by US and Syrian Kurdish forces hours after the one targeting Baghdadi. The Saudi national had been considered a potential successor.

The new IS spokesman, Abu Hamza al-Qurashi, also called on Muslims to swear allegiance to Abu Ibrahim al-Hashemi.

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