BAGHDAD An Islamic State militant joined to the lethal 2015 assault on French weekly Charlie Hebdo could be still be alive, the Iraqi armed service reported on Saturday.
Boubaker el-Hakim was reported by American protection officials to have been killed in November, in a U.S. drone strike in Raqqa, Islamic State’s de facto cash in Syria.
Iraqi intelligence provided info to the Syrian airforce to carry out a sequence of strikes on Islamic State headquarters and hideouts in Syria, including a single believed to belong to el-Hakim, an Iraqi armed service assertion reported.
Aircraft from Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s airforce qualified several destinations in Raqqa and Albu Kamal, around the Iraqi border, reported the assertion, with out indicating the area of el-Hakim’s headquarters or the date of the raids.
An Iraqi armed service spokesman explained to Reuters el-Hakim’s headquarters were wrecked but it was not apparent if he was killed.
In 2015 Iraq and Syria recognized a joint committee with Russia and Iran, Assad’s major foreign backers, to share intelligence about Islamic State.
El-Hakim was believed to have been concerned in scheduling the January 2015 assault on Charlie Hebdo, a weekly recognised for its satirical covers ridiculing political and spiritual leaders.
Two Islamist militants broke into an editorial meeting of the weekly, raking it with bullets, killing seventeen persons. A different militant afterwards killed a policewoman and took hostages at a grocery store, killing 4 right before police shot him dead.
Islamic State declared a “caliphate” spanning areas of Iraq and Syria immediately after it captured the Iraqi city of Mosul in mid-2014.
The hardline Sunni team has considering that lost most metropolitan areas it captured in Iraq and its fighters are now surrounded in areas of Mosul by U.S.-backed Iraqi government forces.
A U.S.-backed offensive is also under way to seize Raqqa, involving a Syrian Kurdish-Arab militia alliance.
(Reporting by Maher Chmaytelli Editing by Andrew Bolton)