From Lalit K Jha Washington, May 16: American commandos have killed senior IS leader Abu Sayyaf in a covert operation in war-torn Syria, the US government said today. Sayyaf was killed yesterday when he engaged the US forces in an operation in al-Amr in eastern Syria to capture him on the orders of President Barack Obama. Umm Sayyaf, his wife, was captured and is currently under US military detention in Iraq.
"Last night, at the direction of the Commander in Chief, I ordered US Special Operations Forces to conduct an operation in al-Amr in eastern Syria to capture an IS senior leader known as Abu Sayyaf and his wife Umm Sayyaf," US Defence Secretary Ashton Carter, said.
"Abu Sayyaf was involved in IS' military operations and helped direct the terrorist organisation's illicit oil, gas, and financial operations as well. Abu Sayyaf was killed during the course of the operation when he engaged US forces.
"US forces captured Umm Sayyaf, who we suspect is a member of IS, played an important role in IS' terrorist activities, and may have been complicit in what appears to have been the enslavement of a young Yezidi woman rescued last night," Carter said adding that no US forces were killed or injured in the operation. Carter said the operation represents another significant blow to the Islamic State (IS), and it is a reminder that the US will never waver in denying safe haven to terrorists who threaten Americans, and its friends and allies.
Abu Sayyaf was a senior IS leader who, among other things, had a senior role in overseeing IS' illegal oil and gas operations a key source of revenue that enables the terrorist organisation to carry out their brutal tactics and oppress thousands of innocent civilians. He was also involved with the group's military operations.