US-led coalition confirms death of French ISIS media official
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The US-led coalition on Thursday confirmed the death of a French Islamic State fighter in Baghouz, Syria.
“A Coalition strike killed an active Daesh media official named Abu Anas al Faransi, also known as Fabien Clain, in Baghouz,” the US-led coalition said in a tweet, using the Arabic acronym for the extremist group.
“#CJTFOIR continues to target Daesh in Syria while disrupting attempts to reemerge in liberated areas as they plot attacks globally,” the coalition added.
According to a BBC report last week, the French Islamic State member was reportedly killed in Syria. Security sources told French media Clain was killed in an airstrike in Baghouz, the last pocket in Syria the Islamic State holds.
The coalition also mentioned Clain’s brother, and fellow Islamic State member, Jean-Michel, was severely wounded in the strike.
Clain became known as the French voice for the Islamic State after a recording on behalf of the extremist group claimed responsibility for the 2015 Paris attacks that left 130 people dead.
Last week, the SDF announced that the military end of the Islamic State was imminent since the extremist group can no longer expand its reach or launch counter-attacks.
On Thursday, SDF commander-in-chief Mazloum Kobani said in a video the SDF media center released that they would “announce the complete victory over Da’esh in a week.”
According to Reuters, Kobani made the statement to 24 SDF fighters who were liberated from the Islamic State on Thursday, held captive for months.
In a statement posted on its website, the SDF said their fighters had halted “direct engagement with the terrorist organization to spare civilians any potential damage.”
Regarding the latest developments in the fight against the terrorist group’s last holdout in Syria, the SDF explained that its forces had tightened the chokehold on the town of Baghouz, located near the Iraqi border.
Earlier in the week, an SDF commander told Kurdistan 24 there are possibly over 1,000 Islamic State fighters holed up in Baghouz.
“There is no official record, but there are maybe more than a thousand mercenaries [ISIS fighters] there, most of them foreigners: Europeans, Turks; a lot of Iraqis, Asians,” he said.
The SDF has given the remaining Islamic State militants in the Baghouz area – believed to be mostly foreign fighters – a final ultimatum to either lay down their arms or face a decisive ground offensive.
Source: Kurdistan 24