Key terrorist operative killed by Pentagon in Syria

WASHINGTON — A key Islamic State leader responsible for terror videos of torture and execution was killed in an airstrike last week in Syria, the Pentagon announced Friday.

Wa'il Adil Hasan Salman al-Fayad, also known as Dr. Wa'il, was minister of information and a key leader for the terror group known as ISIL, Peter Cook, Pentagon press secretary, said Friday in a statement. Wa'il was killed Sept. 7 near Raqqa, the self-proclaimed capital of the Islamic State.

"The removal of ISIL's senior leaders degrades its ability to retain territory, and its ability to plan, finance, and direct attacks inside and outside of the region," Cook said. "We will continue to work with our coalition partners to build momentum in the campaign to deal ISIL a lasting defeat."

Earlier this week, the Pentagon announced that it had confirmed killing Abu Muhammad Al-Adnani, the chief spokesman for the Islamic State and its coordinator of mass-casualty attacks, including those in Paris and Brussels. Wa'il was a close associate Adnani's.

Since the U.S.-led air war against ISIL began in 2014, more than 45,000 fighters have been killed by bombing missions and American allies on the ground. The U.S. strategy, announced late last year, has focused on raids to kill or capture key ISIL leaders and to ultimately retake Raqqa.


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