According to several Iraqi news agencies, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the self-appointed caliph and leader of the Islamic State (ISIS), has issued a demand to the Kurdish Peshmerga forces to cease fire against his group of militants in Mosul.
al-Baghdadi, who remains holed-up in Mosul with nowhere to run, sent his request to the Peshmerga forces through Arab tribal leaders in the Nineveh province demanding that the Peshmerga stop their attacks on the militant organization immediately.
al-Baghdadi also suggested that if the Peshmerga stop the fighting against ISIS, his ISIS militants will be able to vacate Mosul and flee to Syria with their weapons and money. This request by the hiding caliph leader signals he is being boxed into a very tight corner, especially given the rapid gains by the Peshmerga against ISIS in the first 24 hours of the Mosul offensive where several villages just outside Mosul were liberated from ISIS.
Peshmerga forces have dealt the ISIS organization a heavy blow coupled with extensive damage that has all but destroyed the militants’ morale; the Peshmerga are showing no signs of letting up and as a result, ISIS militants and their families are attempting to flee the region and head to Syria. al-Baghdadi’s demand will undoubtedly fall on deaf ears with the Peshmerga if it’s even acknowledged at all.
Currently, the United States still has a $10 million dollar bounty on Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi who remains hiding in Mosul as the offensive continues.