ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – A son of Islamic State (IS) leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi has been killed in the Syrian city of Homs, the jihadist group announced on Tuesday through its news channel.
“Hudayfah al-Badri ... the son of the Caliph ... was killed in an operation against the Nusayriyyah and the Russians at the thermal power station in Homs,” the statement said. The word Nusayriyyah refers to Syria’s Alawite community.
A photo of a young boy carrying an assault rifle was attached in the statement, but no further details were offered.
After four years of multiple security forces fighting against the militant organization, including a US-led Coalition, the whereabouts of Baghdadi remain unknown, but the wording of Tuesday’s statement seemed to imply that he is still alive.
Over the past four years, the IS leader has frequently been reported killed or injured, namely in the bordering areas located between Iraq and Syria, but so far his death has not been confirmed.
Baghdadi’s last message was released on September of 2017, an updated 46-minute audio recording, where he called his followers to wage attacks against the West and keep battling in Iraq, Syria, and other countries.
After losing most of the territory it controlled in Iraq and Syria, the jihadist group continues to launch insurgent attacks, including ambushes, kidnappings, and various kinds of bombings in Iraq and Syria.
On Friday, Iraq security forces announced the arrest of one of the IS militants responsible for the kidnapping and death of six Iraq security force members that sparked anger across the nation and led to a controversial decision to execute multiple death row inmates.
Editing by John J. Catherine