US president Joe Biden announced on Thursday that the top leader of the Islamic State (ISIS) was killed in Idlib, a province in Syria controlled by the jihadist group Tahrir al-Sham, with dozens of Turkish military posts scattered around.
ISIS leader Abu Ibrahim al-Hashimi al-Qurayshi was killed in the pre-dawn attack of the US forces on a house in the village of Atme (Āţimah) near the Turkish border.
A senior US administration official said Qurayshi detonated a bomb at the beginning of the operation that killed him and members of his family, including women and children, The Guardian reported.
Earlier the Pentagon said special forces had hunted down the high-ranking jihadists in an airborne raid, killing 13.
The US attack resulted in the destruction of a US apache helicopter.
Regional and US officials believe that Qurayshi, one of the world’s most wanted men, directed last month’s assault on a prison compound holding thousands of ISIS detainees in Haseke, eastern Syria.
Turkish forces have deployed in the area since October 2017 and practically serve as a buffer between the jihadist groups and Syrian and Russian forces who have been striving to drive the groups out of the area. Turkey claims that its military presence in the area is preventing a ‘terror corridor’.