The White House has confirmed on Friday that a U.S. air strike in Iraq on Tuesday targeted and killed the second-in-command of the Islamic State militant group, dealing a blow to the group that has sought to form a caliphate across the Muslim world.
”Fadhil Ahmad al-Hayali, also known as Hajji Mutazz … was killed in a US military air strike on August 18 while travelling in a vehicle near Mosul, Iraq, along with an ISIL media operative known as Abu Abdullah,” White House spokesman Ned Price, said in a statement. ”His death will adversely impact ISIL’s operations given that his influence spanned ISIL’s finance, media, operations, and logistics.”
The White House said the dead leader was a “primary coordinator” for moving weapons, explosives, vehicles, and people between Iraq and Syria. He was in charge of operations in Iraq and helped plan the group’s offensive in Mosul in June of last year.
The US and its allies stage daily air strikes on ISIL targets in the group’s self-declared caliphate based in Iraq and Syria.