Washington, United States – (AFP):
A research institution has downplayed the killing of Maher al-Agal in Syria, saying the ISIS in the country is “barely a shadow” of what it used to be.
“It is important to remember that each time an Islamic State head is killed, they are replaced immediately,” Damien Ferre, founder of the consultancy Jihad Analytics, said. “It really should not impact their activities,” he said.
The Pentagon had claimed that Maher al-Agal, the leader of the Islamic State, in Syria was killed Tuesday in a drone strike.
The group is weak compared to the period of the Islamic State “caliphate” that came to control large parts of Iraq and Syria between 2011 and 2019, Damien said.
The last two targeted killings of Islamic State leaders took place in Turkish-controlled areas of northern Syria, where groups like Ahrar al-Sharqiya are active and have local knowledge of the terrain and families.