Iraq says it has arrested top leader in Islamic State group
Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi tweeted the news, identifying the man as Sami Jassem, who oversees the Islamic State group’s financial operations and served as the deputy leader of IS under the late Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.
He described it as “one of the most difficult" cross border intelligence operations ever conducted by Iraqi forces.
While our ISF heroes focused on securing the elections, their INIS colleagues were conducting a complex external operation to capture Sami Jasim, who was in charge of Daesh finance, and a deputy of Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi.— Mustafa Al-Kadhimi مصطفى الكاظمي (@MAKadhimi) October 11, 2021
Long live Iraq, and our brave heroes.
Iraqi intelligence officials said that Jassem was detained in an identified foreign country and transported to Iraq few days ago. They spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorised to speak of the operation on the record.
Jassem worked with Al-Qaeda in Iraq leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, before he was killed by the Americans in Iraq in 2016. He assumed various security positions in Iraq, and moved to Syria in 2015, after the Islamic State group, an al-Qaeda offshoot, declared its caliphate in 2014 and became the deputy of Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi, the extremist group's leader.
Al-Baghdadi was killed in a US-led raid in northwestern Syria in 2019.