The French President, Emmanuel Macron, announced on a social media platform that French forces killed the dangerous leader of the Islamic State in the Greater Sahara (ISIS-GS), Adnan Abou Walid al Sahrawi.
Adnan Abou Walid al Sahraoui, chef du groupe terroriste État islamique au Grand Sahara a été neutralisé par les forces françaises. Il s’agit d’un nouveau succès majeur dans le combat que nous menons contre les groupes terroristes au Sahel.
— Emmanuel Macron (@EmmanuelMacron) September 15, 2021
The announcement was made today, and in his tweet, the French President explains that the military and intelligence forces were trying to hunt down the ISIS-GS leader for a while. The killing of the terrorist is a heavy blow for the Islamic State and a success for France and its allies.
al Sahrawi founded the ISIS-GS group over six years ago
Back in 2015, Adnan Abou Walid al Sahraoui decided to get out of the al Murabitun theorist group, often associated with al Qaeda, and establish the ISIS-Gs group. He was the co-leader of Mujao, an islamist group in Mali that kidnaped Spanish aid workers and Algerian diplomats.
In 2017, an ambush in Niger killed four U.S. soldiers, and al Sahrawi claimed the attack. The ISIS-GS group has been labeled as a Foreign Terrorist organization since 2018, and the U.S. State Department announced a $5 million reward for information regarding al Sahrawi’s whereabouts.
The ISIS-GS leader orchestrated several deadly attacks in Africa, including in Niger, Mali, and Burkina Faso, and killed six French humanitarian workers and their driver last year. This summer, Emmanuel Macron announced the end of the French deployment in the Sahel region. The media mentions that starting this September, France has around 5,100 troops in the Sahel region: Chad, Mali, Niger, Mauritania, and Burkina Faso.
Florence Parly, the Defence Minister, explained that the jihadist and theorist al Sahrawi died thanks to the French Barkhane forces. She also mentioned that the fight against terrorism would continue. Unfortunately, many countries have fallen into the hands of theorists and extremists. The French forces managed to drive away jihadist forces from the cities of Mali in 2013, but the war is not over.