Published On: Mon, Oct 28th, 2019

ISIS chief killed: Trump ‘thinking about’ releasing video after doubts raised over account | World | News

The US President described how American troops blasted their way into a compound in the Idlib province of Syria and chased the world’s most-wanted man to his death into a dead-end tunnel. He boasted: “I got to watch much of it.” But intelligence and military sources told the New York Times the real-time video fed into the surveillance room at the White House would have come from drones. 

The footage would not have featured sound or captured the last moments of the terror chief who Mr Trump said cowered in a tunnel with three of his children before detonating a suicide vest. 

The sources also said Mr Trump would have had to have been passed details about the ISIS leader’s death to be able to know his actions and expressions. 

After the President revealed the details in a press conference at the White House on Sunday, US defence secretary Mark Esper declined to back up his boss’s account. 

“I don’t have those details,” Mr Esper said, when asked about how the president would have known the the terrorist died crying and whimpering. 

He added: “The president probably had the opportunity to talk to commanders on the ground.” 

Speaking to reporters at Joint Base Andrews in Maryland as he prepared to leave for Chicago, the president was asked if he would consider releasing the video showing the operation. 

He said: “We’re thinking about it. We may. 

READ MORE: ISIS warning: Terror group appoints new leader

Mr Trump said on Sunday Baghdadi “died after running into a tunnel, whimpering and crying and screaming all the way”. 

He said the terrorist leader “spent his last moments in utter fear, in total panic and dread, terrified of the American forces bearing down on him”. 

Mr Trump has used the taking down of the terror chief as a major national security achievement as he fights for reelection in next year’s vote. 

He praised the troops who carried out the command, saying they “accomplished their mission in grand style”. 

He said: “US Special Operations Forces executed a dangerous and daring night-time raid in northwestern Syria and accomplished their mission in grand style. 

“The US personnel were incredible. I got to watch much of it.” 

Baghdadi was found in a compound outside the village of Barisha in Idlib, northwestern Syria. 

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