Baghdad, IRAQ – The U.S.-led Coalition has carried out an airstrike against the border region with Iraq in Syria’s southern Hasaka in an attempt to arrest Islamic State’s supreme leader, according to Syrian local sources.
The airstrike, according to Syrian media channels, was carried out early on Thursday against the border strip with Iraq to arrest abu Bakr al-Baghad. Heavy shooting occurred in the region.
The U.S. Coalition troops managed to arrest a prominent IS leader, the sources said without confirming if the troops arrested Baghdadi or if the arrested militant managed to run away, Iraqi News reports.
Earlier this month, Iraqi security said Baghdadi is likely to be hiding in Syrian region near borders with Iraq.
And in Baghdad, Iraqi warplanes carried out an airstrike on an Islamic State (IS) command center inside Syria, the Joint Operations Command was quoted as saying Monday, Iraqi News reports.
“Acting on intelligence reports, the Iraqi F-16 warplanes destroyed a building used by the IS group as a command and logistics support center in southern al-Deshisha area in Syria,” the command said in a statement.
The air raid was launched upon directives by Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, the statement read. No further details were given, but the center said more information about the result of the airstrike will be released later.
The Iraqi air force has already carried out several air strikes against Islamic State in Syria since last year, with the approval of the Syrian government of President Bashar Assad and the US-led coalition fighting ISIS.
Iraq had previously announced launching airstrikes against IS locations in Syria. This came after Abadi said security troops will follow IS militants in the whole region, not only in Iraq.
Islamic State continues to launch sporadic attacks across Iraq against troops. Security reports indicate that the militant group still poses threat against stability in the country.
Thousands of Islamic State militants as well as Iraqi civilians were killed since the government campaign, backed by paramilitary troops and the coalition was launched in October 2016 to fight the militant group, which declared a self-styled “caliphate” from Mosul in June 2014.