Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi claims that Iraqi security forces have apprehended a prominent member of the ISIL (ISIS) armed group.
Al-Kadhimi wrote on social media that Sami Jasim, who was in charge of the armed group’s finances and a deputy of dead leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, had been arrested outside of the nation.
While our [Iraqi security forces] heroes focused on securing the elections, their [Iraqi national intelligence services] colleagues were conducting a complex external operation to capture Sami Jasim,” he wrote on Twitter on Monday, a day after the country held a parliamentary election.
From Baghdad, Al Jazeera’s Mahmoud Abdelwahed described Jasim’s arrest as a “breakthrough” for the Iraqi capital.
The government considers this a great achievement as he was responsible for a lot of operations in Iraq and Syria,” Abdelwahed said.
According to The Associated Press, Jasim was detained in an unnamed foreign nation and taken to Iraq a few days ago, citing Iraqi intelligence sources who spoke on the condition of anonymity.
The US State Department had previously offered a reward for information leading to the location of ISIL leaders, including Jasim, who had been named.
Jasim was identified by the US Treasury Department in 2015 for providing financial assistance or other services to the deadly group.
He was in charge of ISIL’s finance, oil and gas, antiquities, and mineral resources operations, according to the report.
Three years after the armed group took significant swathes of northern Iraq, the Iraqi government announced military victory over ISIL in December 2017.
In 2019, US special forces assassinated al-Baghdadi in an operation in northern Syria.
ISIL agents, on the other hand, continue to attack and kidnap people across Iraq.