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Pentagon press secretary John Kirby said the death of the leader of the violent Islamic State group was a “significant blow” to the militant group.
Watch Kirby’s remarks in the player above.
This comes after Abu Ibrahim al-Hashimi al-Qurayshi was killed Thursday, blowing himself up along with members of his family during an overnight raid carried out by U.S. special operations forces in northwestern Syria.
The raid targeted al-Qurayshi, who took over as head of the militant group on Oct. 31, 2019, just days after leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi died during a U.S. raid in the same area.
The operation came as IS has been trying for a resurgence, with a series of attacks in the region, including an assault late last month to seize a prison in northeast Syria holding at least 3,000 IS detainees, its boldest operation in years.
About 50 U.S. special operations forces landed in helicopters and attacked a house in a rebel-held corner of Syria, clashing for two hours with gunmen, witnesses said.
WATCH: Biden speaks on an overnight raid that killed an Islamic State leader in northern Syria
Residents described continuous gunfire and explosions that jolted the town of Atmeh near the Turkish border, an area dotted with camps for internally displaced people from Syria’s civil war.
Kirby said U.S. forces were able to evacuate 10 people from the building: a man, a woman and four children from the first floor and four children from the second floor.
He said when al-Qurayshi detonated the bomb, he also killed his wife and two children. Kirby said that U.S. officials were conducting an assessment to determine whether American action resulted in any civilian deaths.
U.S. forces took fingerprints and DNA, which confirmed al-Qurayshi’s death, officials said.
President Joe Biden gave “the final go” on the mission on Tuesday morning during his daily national security briefing in the Oval Office, where he was joined by Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark Milley.
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