US President Donald Trump, on Sunday 27 October announced the death of Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, who was killed in a joint operation in a northwest Syrian village near the Turkish border.
Russia, Turkey, Syria, Iraq, and Syrian Kurds contributed to the operation, Trump said in his address.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a Syria war monitor, according to AP, had reported an attack carried out by a squadron of eight helicopters accompanied by a warplane, on positions in the Barisha area north of Idlib city, after midnight on Saturday, 26 October.
Trump had also tweeted on Saturday night, hinting at the development, saying that “something big has happened”.
As the Turkish, Iraqi and Syrian Kudish forces claimed their part in the victory, leaders across countries as well leaders within the United States have hailed this as an important milestone in the fight against terror.
Defeating Islamic State Priority: France President Emmanual Macron
French President Emmanuel Macron has said Baghdadi’s death is a huge blow for Islamic State. However, it is just a stage in the fight against the IS.
“Al-Baghdadi’s death is a hard blow against Islamic State, but it is just a stage. With our partners in the international coalition, the fight continues to finally defeat this terrorist organisation. It is our priority in West Asia,” Macron said in a tweet.
Important Milestone in Battle Against Terror: Israel PM Netanyahu
Prime Minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu congratulated US President Donald Trump over the achievement. He also lauded the united resolve the countries involved have shown to “fight the forces of terror.”
“This is an important milestone but its a part of a longer battle we must win.”Benjamin Netanyahu, Prime Minister, Israel
Will Work to End Barbaric Activities of Daesh: UK Prime Minsiter Boris Johnson
The Prime Minister of United Kingdom, Boris Johnson called Baghdadi’s death an important moment in the fight against terror. He said that he will work with UKs coalition partners in order to “being an end to the murderous, barbaric activities of Daesh once and for all.
Will Continue to Support Anti-Terror Efforts: Turkey PM Erdogan
Turkey President Tayyip Erdogan, on his twitter said that Baghdadi’s killing marks a turning point in our joint fight against terrorism.
He said that his country will continue to support anti-terror efforts, as it has done in the past.
‘Major Victory in Mission of Defeating ISIS’
Top US leaders on Sunday described it as a great day for America and hailed President Donald Trump for the secret mission.
The death of al-Baghdadi is a major victory in the enduring mission to defeat the dreaded terror group, US Secretary of Defense Mark Esper has said, according to PTI.
“This is a great day for America and a great day for the world. Last night, US joint special operations forces and interagency partners flawlessly executed a Commander-in-Chief-directed operation to capture or kill Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.”US Secretary of Defense Mark Esper
"As a result, Baghdadi, who led the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria terrorist movement and inspired one of the most brutal and misguided terror campaigns in modern history, is dead at the hands of the United States military," Esper said, according to PTI.
In a statement, the defense secretary said, "With our partners we defeated the physical caliphate of ISIS earlier this year and now its founder and leader is dead. This is a major victory in the enduring defeat ISIS mission."
"It is truly a great day in America! Congratulations to President Trump, our intel community, and our US Special Forces for eliminating the most wanted terrorist in the world," said Nikki Haley, Indian-American leader and former US Ambassador to the UN.
“This is a great day for United States, the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS, and people all across the world who have suffered far too long from the cruelty of terrorism.”Secretary of State Mike Pompeo
"While there is still work left to do to ensure ISIS' enduring defeat, Baghdadi's death follows the path of scores of other ISIS leaders that have been removed from the battlefield and can no longer commit heinous atrocities or spread their vile ideology of hatred to poison and recruit vulnerable minds. His evil acts of beheadings, enslavement of women, rape, torture, and pure brutality follows him to his grave," Pompeo said, according to PTI.
Former US Vice President and Democratic presidential frontrunner Joe Biden congratulated special forces, intelligence community, and military professionals on delivering justice to al-Baghdadi.
"It is thanks to their courage and relentless determination to carry out their mission that ISIS has suffered a vital loss," he said.
"Americans salute the heroism, dedication and skill of our military and our intelligence professionals and acknowledge the work of our partners in the region. We are relieved that no US personnel died in this daring raid," House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said in a statement.