The U.S. operation ended in the death of the leader of the Islamic State (IS) terror group, Abu Ibrahim Hashemi Qurahiwhich took several months to plan and take place in a highly stressful environment due to the presence of civilians and children in the building where the target was located.
Senior U.S. officials on Thursday detailed how the operation was organized and conducted, but they did not want to confirm the death toll, which totaled according to White Helmets and UNICEF aid workers 13 people, including 6 minors.
According to the American story, these are the keys to the operation:
months of preparation
Plans for action last ‘months’: president weJoe Biden was first briefed on the matter in December when his intelligence team absolutely determined that it was Al Qurashi who was hiding in a building in the Atme district of northwestern Syria’s Idlib province.
“The president was informed of a range of possible options for ending this terrorist target, as well as an unusually complex situation due to the high number of children in the area and the number of families on the ground floor,” an official said at the briefing. . Phone News .
Biden himself explained in his speech white house This background prompted him to “decide to conduct a special forces raid, which is more risky for the U.S. military,” “rather than launch an air strike.”
The officials gave the green light for the operation on Tuesday morning in the Oval Office and oversaw “key aspects of the operation” in the White House Situation Room.
“Considering we know there are many children in the house on the ground floor, the atmosphere is very tense,” added the source, who requested anonymity.
Several civilians rescued
When the operation began, U.S. troops entered the building and They ask everyone to get outAfterwards, the family who lived on the ground floor “went out and were moved to safety,” the source said.
Al Qurashi was on the third floor, and shortly after the operation began, “he decided to detonate himself,” detonating explosives that killed “several members of his family,” Biden explained in his remarks.
Specifically, the suicide killed the IS leader, a woman and three childrenA White House spokeswoman later told reporters, Rimpsaki.
According to the aforementioned U.S. official, “the explosion on the third floor was so powerful that it ejected bodies from the house into the surrounding area.”
the building still stands
U.S. government ‘highly trusted’ to secure building he was hiding in before launching operation GulashHe added that if the jihadists detonated their bombs and committed suicide, I was “sound in structure” and “would not collapse”.
“I doubt that he (Al Qurashi) knew (…) that his intention was probably to kill everyone in the building,” the official said.
Another jihadist dies
US special forces know that there lives on the second floor a lieutenant Al Qurashi, an unidentified “IS terrorist” ‘deeply entrenched’ with wife At that level, the source added.
Both opened fire on the U.S. team, eventually killing them, before the four children on that floor came out and were “taken to a safe place,” the official said, admitting he didn’t know if there were more Minors on the floor. The room where the mujahideen and his wife died.
The official said the main setback for the operation was a “mechanical failure” with a helicopter that had to be “moved to another location” and eventually “destroyed”.
never left the building
Officials justify the decision perform action In a building inhabited by civilians, he said that Al Qurashi “never left the house”, except for “occasional showers on the roof”.
“He directed (Islamic State operations) through messengers coming and going and used innocent people (living in the building) as shields,” he added.