Al-Baghdadi wounded in airstrike near Raqqa in May

Al-Baghdadi wounded in airstrike near Raqqa in May

American and Iraqi officials quoted by Iraqi media and CNN said that Baghdadi was wounded in May.

It reported that USA intelligence agencies had "assessed with a high degree of confidence" that Baghadi, the world's most wanted man, was in Ragga when the missile hit. The assessment is based on reports from Islamic State detainees and refugees in Northern Syria that emerged months after the airstrike.

"He is suffering from fractures and severe injuries in his leg and body that no longer allow him to walk unassisted".

Al-Baghdadi is hiding in the desert in Syria, northeast of Deir Ezzor Province, he added.

"We have irrefutable information and documents from sources within the terrorist organisation that al-Baghdadi is still alive and hiding with the help of his collaborators", al-Basri said.

Last June, Russia said it had probably killed Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi in a late May air raid near Raqa in Syria, but later said it was still trying to verify his fate. However, the raid is thought to have been carried out around May 28, the date of the airstrike with which the Russians claimed to have killed or wounded the ISIS leader.

Aston Villa beat rivals Birmingham to boost EPL promotion push
It has been a hugely tough week for manager Steve Bruce following the death of his father but he could be back in the dugout. Birmingham were reduced to 10 men in the closing seconds following Cheikh Ndoye's second yellow card.

Iraqi authorities recently issued arrest warrants for Baghdadi and other senior extremists, as well as remnants of the former regime's Baath Party, including Saddam Hussein's daughter.

At the time, ISIS was about to lose control of the Iraqi city of Mosul and its so-called capital Raqqa had been almost encircled by US-backed forces.

In 2014, a video was released showing al-Baghdadi preaching during Friday prayer at a mosque in Mosul, Iraq, which was then held by ISIS.

Analysts warned at the time reports of Baghdadi's death should be treated with skepticism given the high number of previous false reports.

He did not swear allegiance to the leader of the al-Qaeda franchise, Ayman al-Zawahiri, who had urged IS to focus on Iraq and leave Syria to al-Nusra.

Related Articles