Syrian state television has claimed the world’s most wanted terrorist Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi has been killed in an airstrike, according to several reports.
However, it is not the first time the leader of ISIS has been reported dead – the latest claims have been met with skepticism by many experts and could well turn out to be untrue.
It would certainly be in the interests of the Assad regime to claim that the world’s most wanted terrorist had been killed to provide it with a short -term propaganda victory.
ISIS’s official media wing Amaq has also not confirmed the news.
The latest report of al-Baghdadi’s death claims the terrorist was killed in Raqqa.
Syrian activists, Raqqa24, did report an airstrike in Raqqa killed at least seven civilians on Saturday, although there was no mention made of al-Baghdadi.
The hate preacher, who has a $25million bounty on his head, had been believed to be hiding out in the desert outside the besieged city of Mosul in northern Iraq.
But intelligence agencies believe he escaped from the city while it was being retaken by the Iraqi army.
It was thought he may have been trying to get to ISIS’ de facto capital in Raqqa.
In January it was reported the leader had been ‘critically injured in airstrikes in northern Iraq.