Takfiri ISIL group reported the death of its chief spokesman, Abu Muhammad al-Adnani, on Tuesday, potentially signaling the loss of a senior militant who has steered the group’s campaign to bring violent operations to the West.
“Shaykh Abu Muhammad al-Adnani, the spokesman of the Islamic State, was martyred while surveying the operations to repel the military campaigns in Aleppo,” ISIL’s news outlet “Amaq” wrote, citing a military source, in a Tuesday news release sent to Telegram channels monitored by ISIL followers.
Meanwhile in a tweet, Amaq said Adnani was killed while inspecting troops in Aleppo. It did not say exactly when, where or how Adnani died.
The 39-year-old Adnani, born in Binnish in northern Syria, is described as having hand-selected the gruesome execution videos ISIL routinely puts out, according to The New York Times.
He was the subject of a $5 million State Department reward. In December, a senior intelligence source told NBC that Adnani was the member of ISIL — not the group’s leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi — that the U.S. wanted dead the most.
“He is at the top of the list,” the official said.