Commander: Iraqi Forces Tracking down ISIL Leader Al-Baghdadi
The Spokesperson for the Iraqi Special Operations Command, Yahya Rasul Zubaidi, who spoke to Sputnik on Wednesday, said the forces are currently trying to track down the exact location of the ISIL leader, Abu Bakir al-Baghdadi, Iraqi News reported.
Zubaidi explained that the intelligence units are tracking the movements of Baghdadi and as soon as they detect his exact location, they will immediately conduct an attack to eliminate him.
However, the Iraqi official pointed out that Baghdadi’s location is a confidential information and whether he is in Mosul or not is something that can not be revealed publicly to the media.
Earlier this week, some media outlet quoted local sources as saying that the ISIL leader has been seen near Nineveh’s borders with Syria, apparently in a poor health condition
A local source in Nineveh told the network Saturday that Baghdadi, who the source said appeared near the borders with Syria’s Boukamal, looked skinny and unable to speak clearly due to past traumas. He was moving unguarded so as not to draw suspicions.
Alsumariya News, quoting the source, said Baghdadi rallied a number of his tribal supporters and voiced criticism of Iraqi members of his group for failing to exhibit enough backing for Arab and foreign members who, he said, were leading the battle against security forces.
Since ISIL took over several areas of Iraq to proclaim an “Islamic Caliphate”, Baghdadi’s exact whereabouts have remained a mystery and subject to clashing speculations. The ambiguity increased as the Iraqi government launched an offensive in October 2016 to retake Mosul, Islamic State’s previously-proclaimed capital.