Russian airstrike kills IS 'minister of war' in Syria

Russian airstrike kills IS 'minister of war' in Syria
1 min read
08 September, 2017
Russia’s Ministry of Defence said on Friday it has killed four Islamic State group leaders in an airstrike outside the eastern Syria city of Deir ez-Zour.
Heavy clashes continue between Syrian regime forces and IS militants [AFP]
Russia claimed on Friday its airstrikes killed four top Islamic State [IS] commanders in Syria, including the group's "minister of war" and the "Emir of Deir ez-Zour".

"As a result of a precision airstrike of the Russian air forces in the vicinity of Deir ez-Zour city, a command post, communication centre and some 40 [IS] fighters have been killed," the Russian defence ministry said in a statement on Facebook.

"According to confirmed data, among the killed fighters are four influential field commanders including Deir ez-Zour emir Abu Mohammed al-Shimali," the ministry said.

Gulmurod Khalimov, a native of Tajikistan who is known as the group's "Minister of War", suffered a "fatal injury", the ministry added.

Khalimov headed the Tajik interior ministry's Special Forces unit before joining IS in 2015.

Heavy clashes continued between Syrian regime forces - backed by Russia - and IS militants fighting to reinstate a three-year-long siege imposed on tens of thousands of civilians in Deir ez-Zour.

Syrian regime forces broke the siege on Tuesday, marking a significant advance against the militants.