You are here: Home » PTI Stories » National » News
Business Standard

Iraqi premier warns IS weakened, not defeated

Topics
War Conflict

AFP  |  Berlin 

Iraqi Premier Adel Abdel Mahdi said Tuesday the Islamic State group had been militarily weakened but not defeated as the recent deadly Sri Lanka bombings had shown.

An IS propaganda video released Monday with a purported appearance by the jihadist group's elusive supremo Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi showed him in what appeared to be a "very simple and isolated" location, Mahdi said on a visit to Berlin.

"One and a half years ago Daesh controlled large areas in Iraq and Syria, and now Baghdadi appears in an isolated, unknown location," he said about the world's most wanted man, using another name for IS.

"He did not seem to be among his followers like the first time in Mosul", he said, referring to a 2014 video in which Baghdadi announced the birth of IS's much-feared "caliphate" across swathes of Iraq and Syria.

After losing its last remaining territory in the Syrian town of Baghouz in March, "IS has not completely disappeared but suffered painful blows", the Iraqi premier said at a joint press conference with German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

Mahdi cautioned that IS "will try to rebuild trust among its fighters, will try to launch further operations" like the Sri Lanka April 21 attacks which killed more than 250 people.

"Daesh was broken, but if little cells are left, it could reactivate and resurface and commit painful attacks," he added, according to interpreted remarks.

Similarly, Merkel said the video was a sign that "we will remain occupied for some time to come with the question of how IS can finally be defeated."

The speaker in the 18-minute video, a man with a long grey beard that appeared dyed with henna, sat in a room with a Kalashnikov assault rifle leaning against the wall behind him.

He was identified as Baghdadi by both SITE, which tracks IS activity, and Hisham al-Hashemi, an Iraqi expert on the group.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

Dear Reader,


Business Standard has always strived hard to provide up-to-date information and commentary on developments that are of interest to you and have wider political and economic implications for the country and the world. Your encouragement and constant feedback on how to improve our offering have only made our resolve and commitment to these ideals stronger. Even during these difficult times arising out of Covid-19, we continue to remain committed to keeping you informed and updated with credible news, authoritative views and incisive commentary on topical issues of relevance.
We, however, have a request.

As we battle the economic impact of the pandemic, we need your support even more, so that we can continue to offer you more quality content. Our subscription model has seen an encouraging response from many of you, who have subscribed to our online content. More subscription to our online content can only help us achieve the goals of offering you even better and more relevant content. We believe in free, fair and credible journalism. Your support through more subscriptions can help us practise the journalism to which we are committed.

Support quality journalism and subscribe to Business Standard.

Digital Editor

First Published: Tue, April 30 2019. 19:55 IST
RECOMMENDED FOR YOU