US strike kills three senior ISIS leaders in Syria, some with ties to Paris attacks

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Militants of the Islamic State. File photo

ARA News

Damascus – The US-led coalition launch renewed airstrikes on Islamic State’s (ISIS) headquarters in Syria’s Raqqa, killing three senior jihadi leaders, the Pentagon said on Tuesday.

The targeted ISIS leaders were reportedly involved in plotting attacks abroad. Two of them assisted in facilitating last year’s attacks in Paris.

“The three were working together to plot and facilitate attacks against Western targets at the time of the strike,” Pentagon press secretary Peter Cook said in a statement.

The three jihadi leaders were identified as Salah-Eddine Gourmat, Sammy Djedou and Walid Hamman.

Gourmat, a French national, and Djedou, a Belgian, were involved in facilitating the November 13, 2015 Paris attacks, that claimed lives of 130 people.

Walid Hamman, the third jihadist who was killed along with others in a coalition airstrike on December 4, was a Frenchman who Cook said was a suicide-attack planner “who was convicted in absentia in Belgium for a terror plot disrupted in 2015.”

According to officials, the three jihadists belonged to a network led by Boubaker Al-Hakim, a Tunisian member of ISIS who was killed in an airstrike last month.

The US-led coalition has been striking ISIS positions in Syria and Iraq since summer of 2014. The coalition also backs local ground troops in both countries to liberate territories held by the radical group.

Reporting by: Laila Majdalawi | Source: ARA News & Agencies

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