French Forces have killed the leader of the Islamic State in the Greater Sahara (ISIS-GS) and Sahel region, Adnan Abou Walid al Sahraoui, according to French President, Emmanuel Macron.
Armed Forces Minister, Florence Parly tweeted on Thursday that the IS chief was hunted down by military and intelligence agents after a long term hunt. She described Sahraoui’s death as a great blow to the IS in the Sahara, where they’ve been terrorising nations in the Sahel.
“This is another major success in our fight against terrorist groups in the Sahel,” President Macron tweeted on Wednesday night.
“The Nation is thinking this evening of all its heroes who died for France in the Sahel in the Serval and Barkhane operations, of the bereaved families, of all of its wounded. Their sacrifice is not in vain. With our African, European and American partners, we will continue this fight,” he tweeted.
Al Sahraoui has been on the radar of international agents since 2017 after killing four United States soldiers following an ambush on the officials in Niger Republic.
The United States had placed a $5million bounty on Al Sahraoui’s head after listing the ISIS-GS as a foreign terrorist organisation. The IS chief was notorious for killing high profile foreign agents in Africa and has been a nemesis to the Sahel region especially.
Recall that Macron ordered an end to the deployment of French troops in the Sahel region, in its previous operation Berkhane for a more robust multilateral approach which will see France sharing the security stability of the region with other countries.
There are at least 5,000 French troops across the Sahel, including Chad, Mali, Niger, Burkina Faso and Mauritania. The new security force in the Sahel region, although will be controlled by French forces will have a more decentralized involvement of the French.
Named Takuba Task Force, a European military setup, it will work in advisory capacity and also help the Malian forces and others to drive out insurgents in the region.
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