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White House has no update on Russian report of Baghdadi's death
June 16, 2017 / 12:47 PM / 3 months ago

White House has no update on Russian report of Baghdadi's death

A man purported to be the reclusive leader of the militant Islamic State Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi making what would have been his first public appearance, at a mosque in the centre of Iraq's second city, Mosul, according to a video recording posted on the Internet on July 5, 2014, in this still image taken from video. REUTERS/Social Media Website via Reuters TV/Files

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. administration on Friday was unable to provide any update on a report by Russia’s defense ministry that it may have killed Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi in an air strike near the Syrian city of Raqqa last month, a White House official said.

There was no initial independent confirmation that Baghdadi had been killed. The U.S.-led coalition fighting against Islamic State militants said it could not confirm the death, and several Iraqi officials told Reuters they were skeptical.

Reporting by Yara Bayoumy; Writing by Eric Walsh; Editing by Bernadette Baum

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