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Iraq says ISIL's second-in-command killed


05-14-2015 15:22 BJT

The Iraqi Defence Ministry says a US-led coalition air strike in the north of the country has killed the deputy commander of the Islamic State militant group.

Abu Alaa al-Afari was at a mosque near Tal Afar where he was meeting with other militants. But the US military has denied conducting such an attack on the mosque. More than 60 countries, led by the US, launched a campaign last summer to "degrade and destroy" the ultra-radical Sunni Islamist State group.

The self-proclaimed caliph of the jihadist militants, Abu Bark al-Baghdadi, is also recently reported to have been incapacitated by an air strike in the same region of Iraq.

The Pentagon has denied those reports as well, saying that the leader of the extremists remains capable of directing operations and was not wounded in any raid.

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