Ameen Mukdad, a violinist from Mosul who lived under ISIS’s rule for two and a half years where they destroyed his musical instruments, performs at Nabi Yunus shrine in eastern Mosul, Iraq, April 19, 2017.. (photo credit:MUHAMMAD HAMED / REUTERS)
Islamic State fighters have withdrawn from the last territory they controlled in the Aleppo Governorate due to the advancement of the Syrian army, stated the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) which is based in Britain.
On Saturday, the SOHR reported that a high ranking commanding officer of the “Tiger Forces,” an elite unit in the Syrian Army, was badly injured and two of his subordinates killed when ISIS militants attacked him by launching a rocket at his vehicle while traveling near Raqqa.
The “Tiger Forces” were aiding the Syrian Army to search after ISIS fighters in the south-east villages and suburbs of Aleppo in the hours after the jihadist militants withdrew. Independent reports confirm that while the Syrian army did not yet establish it’s presence in all previously ISIS-held territory, no ISIS fighters remain in Aleppo.
The Islamic State, however, is far from giving up in other points of conflict. ISIS fighters used artillery to attack the town of Al Mehrem in the Eastern suburbs of Homs earlier in the week.
In the attack, property was damaged and one woman wounded. Islamic State is still fighting along various roads in eastern Homs and was recently able to kill a brigadier-general of the Syrian army in the city.
Words to weep by
Meanwhile, In a Friday sermon, one ISIS leader admitted the terrorist group was defeated in Mosul and said a temporary command post would be established West of Mosul in Tal Afar.
The Friday sermon also saw one of the Islamic State leaders burst into tears when he mentioned the name of Abu Bakr al Baghdadi, according to an eyewitness who spoke to Iraqi broadcaster Al Sumaria News. He then recited verses from the Quran that speaks of people who are no longer among the living, Al Sumaria added.
If true, this could confirm the Russian statement that it is very likely Baghdadi was killed in June during an attack on the city of Raqqa is Syria. The Russian statement was followed by a similar Iranian one but so far no ISIS spokesperson confirmed or denied the claim.