A top figure of the ISIS faction in northern Somalia is dead, according to the region’s authorities.
Last week his body was discovered by a Mogadishu beach, Fox News reported. Officials who asked not to be identified said Mahad Moalim was covertly visiting the region when he was abducted.
Deputy chief of IS-linked group in Somalia killed: Officials https://t.co/JEekV78yuL
— NEWS102.3 KRMG 🎙 📻 🎧 (@KRMGtulsa) October 23, 2018
However, Moalim’s family blames other ISIS top leaders. Others cite reports that he was sick and was killed by those interested in becoming his replacement.
In Feb., the U.S. labeled Moalim a “specially designated global terrorist,” and issued sanctions against him, according to Strategic Intelligence.
The Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control said he was enabling weapons to be shipped and aiding fighters to cross from Yemen into the Gulf of Aden.
The faction that was led by Moalim was founded by British terrorist Abdiqadir Mumin.
The group, who gets their capital from extorting citizens, has claimed responsibility for attacks in Mogadishu, Somalia, and in northern Puntland where they are grounded.
Analyst Caleb Weiss said, “It is unclear exactly how many claims made by the group are legitimate, as few are reported by local media or proven with visual evidence. Some assassination claims, however, are followed up with photo or video proof.”
On Aug. 25, U.S. forces killed Abu Sayed Orakzai, who headed ISIS in Afghanistan. The airstrike was carried out in the Nangarhar province after they received intelligence from Afghanistan’s National Directorate of Security, CNN reported.
Last year, Russian forces in Syria launched an airstrike that killed the top ISIS leader, leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi after receiving intelligence that he would be present at an ISIS meeting.
A 2017 Russian statement was released and read, “On May 28, after drones were used to confirm the information on the place and time of the meeting of [ISIL] leaders, between 00:35 and 00:45, Russian air forces launched a strike on the command point where the leaders were located. According to the information which is now being checked via various channels, also present at the meeting was [ISIL] leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, who was eliminated as a result of the strike,” The Times reported.
However, a video emerged in Aug. 2018 that suggested that al-Baghdadi may still be alive, casting doubt on the Russian report.