Macron says French forces killed IS leader in Sahara

DAPHNÉ BENOIT / AFP

French President Emmanuel Macron said the military forces had killed IS militant Adnan Abu Walid al-Sahrawi, the leader of the terror group in the Greater Sahara.

"It's another major success in our fight against terrorist groups in the Sahel," Macron said in a tweet, without disclosing the location of the operation.

Sahrawi was the historic leader of the IS in the Sahel region of West Africa and his group targetted US soldiers in a deadly attack in 2017, Macron's office said.

In August 2020, Sahrawi personally ordered the killing of six French charity workers and their Nigerien driver, it added.

Macron said in July that France would soon begin reshaping its force in the Sahel, where it has been on the front line of the fight against IS militants, and would ultimately halve its military presence.

With no apparent end in sight to France's operations and political turmoil especially in Mali, Paris had grown frustrated. 

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