An Iraqi terrorist, who had a reputation for being a bomb expert, died on Monday when a bomb that he was constructing blew up.
Abu Moaaz, a bomb maker for ISIS, was manufacturing explosives in central Iraq, about 15 miles north of Baqubah when the explosion took place, The Daily Mail reported.
He had recently supplied ISIS numerous explosive devices that were used to kill many people, including law enforcement.
An #Islamic_State bomb maker lost his life Monday while trying to manufacture #explosive charges in #Diyala province.https://t.co/wm9y9j0tp8
— Iraqi News – Iraq (@IraqiNews_com) October 29, 2018
In 2014, ISIS held a stronghold that swept from Iraq to Syria, but that presence has shrunk considerably.
In 2017, the Iraqi Army in conjunction with American led airstrikes cleared ISIS from most of the main cities in Iraq.
Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi professed a victory over ISIS in December. However, they are not completely gone and remain scattered about the region, according to Military Times.
The strongest ISIS presence, which has been increasing, is along the border that Iraq shares with Syria. This location is where 68 American-backed fighters were killed by ISIS operatives just last week.
On Friday, 40 U.S.-backed Syrian fighters were killed in Sousa by ISIS suicide bombers in a counter attack, taking back some control in eastern Syria near the Iraqi border.
The counterattack was a calibrated move by ISIS who used a sandstorm to make their move.
Col. Sean Ryan, spokesman for the U.S.-led coalition said, “The sandstorm allowed an ISIS counterattack, which was surprising given the conditions, but now the air is clear, and the Coalition will continue to increase air and fire support to assist our partners.”
He added that a tally on casualties from both sides has not been confirmed but it was a “difficult fight.”
White House envoy for the war against ISIS, Brett McGurk said, “the military mission in Syria is the enduring defeat of ISIS.”
“It is very difficult because we are in the last stages, where almost every ISIS fighter is a suicide belt. It’s very difficult fighting but we will get it done,” McGurk said.