Iraqi Analyst Discloses S.Arabia, Turkey’s Plot to Transfer Al-Baghdadi to Libya
A prominent Iraqi military analyst disclosed that Riyadh and Ankara had hatched plots to transfer ISIL leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi from Mosul to Libya but the massive presence of the popular forces and Russian fighter jets at the bordering areas of Iraq and Syria dissuaded them.
"The two countries were working to take al-Baghdadi to Turkey either by moving him through Mosul and Kirkuk to the North or through al-Qa'em and al-Ratba corridor to Deir Ezzur in Syria and then to Turkey to eventually transfer him to Libya," Safa al-A'asam told Iraq's al-Ma'louma news agency on Wednesday.
He added that the ISIL concluded that transferring al-Baghdadi through Tal Afar region to Raqqa in Syria is also impossible given the massive presence of Hashd al-Sha'abi (popular forces) in the Southern front near Be'aaj district, Northwest of the Iraqi province of Nineveh as well as the numerous flights done by the Russian fighter jets over the Syrian bordering areas with Iraq.
"The ISIL is now working to find a different path through the Iraq-Syria borders to take al-Baghdadi to Turkey and then to Libya or any other countries," al-A'asam said.
The statements came as reports from western Iraq said earlier this month that al-Baghdadi has succumbed to his last month's fatal injuries and died in a region along the border with Syria.
"Al-Baghdadi had been severely wounded in the Al-Anbar battle in Western Iraq last month, and his wounds were so lethal that he could not at all move freely," a local Iraqi source told the Arabic service of the Russian Sputnik news agency.
The source said despite long treatment in Mosul, the general health conditions of the ISIL leader deteriorated due to "a deep abdominal cut, damage to his liver and crippling wounds in his left limbs".
The source said al-Baghdad lost his life in the town of Al-Be'aaj some 100km (60 miles) West of Mosul near the border with Syria, but his death is concealed to avoid the loss of morale among ISIL ranks who are faced with a tough war in Mosul and Syria these days.
There have been numerous reports on the fate or location of the ISIL leader in the last two years.
As the war ravages over the self-proclaimed capital of the terrorist cult, Mosul, in Western Iraq, Arab media sources said earlier this month that al-Baghdadi had fled to Raqqa in Syria before the Iraqi army started its operations in Mosul, but his wife was taken.
According to Iraq's Sumeriya News, local sources in Nineveh quoted defected ISIL leaders as saying that al-Baghdadi has managed to escape from Mosul to Raqqa, but his wife has been arrested.
Source: Al Alam