ISIS broke its silence days after a raid by U.S. special forces resulted in the death of its former leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, releasing an audio statement to announce the new leader of the terror group Thursday.
Abu Ibrahim al-Hashim al-Qurayshi is now the new spokesman and chief of ISIS, the group’s media arm, al Furqan, declared in an audio clip uploaded on the Telegram app.
“We mourn you… commander of the faithful,” said the new ISIS commander Abu Hamza al-Quraishi.
Two days after Baghdadi’s death, ISIS’ legislative body convened to select the new leader, Quraishi explained.
“The Islamic State shura council convened immediately after confirming the martyrdom of Sheikh Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, and the elders of the holy warriors agreed” on his successor.
The jihadist blasted President Donald Trump in the audio, warning Americans should not celebrate Baghdadi’s death.
“America, don’t you realize that the Islamic State is now at the forefront of Europe and West Africa? It is extended from the East to the West,” Quraishi warned. ”Do not rejoice America, the new chosen one will make you forget the horror you have beholden… and make the achievements of the Baghdadi days taste sweet.”
Quraishi, who claims he is a descent from the tribe of Prophet Muhammad,“was identified as a scholar, a well-known warrior and ’emir of war’ who has battled American forces and knows its wars,” Daily Mail reports.
Last Sunday, President Trump announced the leader of the world’s most feared terror group was annihilated by U.S. forces, telling the nation he watched Baghdadi dying “in a vicious and violent way, as a coward, running and crying” while observing the raid in the Situation Room.
“He died like a dog, he died like a coward,” he said.
After being under surveillance for weeks by the American military, a U.S. military operation in northwest Syria that took approximately two hours lead to Baghdadi’s death. He detonated an explosive vest as U.S. Special Operations Forces pursued him after storming his compound in the Idlib Province, killing himself and two children he brought with him. Trump said he died whimpering at the back of a dead-end tunnel.
He crawled into a hole with two small children and blew himself up while his people stayed on the ground,” Marine Corps Gen. Kenneth F. McKenzie Jr., commander of U.S. Central Command, explained.
The U.S. had been searching for al-Baghdadi for years, Trump said, explaining his capture or death has been “the top national security priority of my administration.”
The Pentagon on Wednesday released footage of the raid that led to Baghdadi blowing himself up. U.S. forces killed six ISIS members during the raid in addition to Baghdadi.
Four Americans were brutally killed while al-Baghdadi was in power.
James Foley, a celebrated journalist, was kidnapped by ISIS and beheaded in 2014 by order of al-Baghdadi. Kay Mueller, a humanitarian travelling with Syrian contractors for Doctors without Borders was working in Syria when she was kidnapped by ISIS. Mueller was raped, tortured, and enslaved by the terrorist group until her death. Steven Sotloff, a reporter for TIME, was captured by ISIS militants in 2013 while reporting on the civil war in Syria between Islamist forces and then beheaded in 2014 by the same jihadi that slaughtered James Foley.
Peter Kassig, who deployed to Iraq as an Army Ranger in 2007, went to Syria to help Syrian Civil War refugees in 2012. He was captured by ISIS soon after and beheaded in 2014.
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