The Iraqi National Intelligence Service (INIS) announced that it has arrested a key leader of the Islamic State (IS) terror group.
“The terrorist named Abdul-Nasser Qardash, a former candidate to succeed the (dead IS leader) Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, has been arrested,” INIS said in a statement on Wednesday on its official Twitter account.
The statement gave no further details about the location of the arrest or whether there were others captured with him, reports Xinhua news agency.
Qardash is one of the most important leaders of IS, but the group later chose Abdul-Rahman al-Mawla to succeed al-Baghdadi.
In October 2019, US President Donald Trump announced that the US Special Operations Forces conducted an overnight raid targeting al-Baghdadi in northwestern Syria, during which the IS leaderikilled himself by igniting a suicide vest.
Al-Baghdadi, 48, whose real name is Ibrahim Awad al-Badri, announced the establishment of a caliphate, or the so-called IS, in June 2014.
His extremist militant group once captured large swathes of land in western and northern Iraq as well as parts of neighbouring Syria, but was later defeated in both countries.