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US doubles its reward for Daesh leader to $25 million

The United States yesterday more than doubled its previous reward for information on Daesh leader Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi, offering $25 million for information that would help locate, arrest or convict the head of the militant group.

The US State Department's Rewards for Justice programme previously offered $10 million for information on Al-Baghdadi, announced in October 2011. The increase was announced in a statement yesterday.

Al-Baghdadi, an Iraqi whose real name is Ibrahim Al-Samarrai, declared himself as the self-proclaimed caliph of a huge swathe of Iraq and Syria more than two years ago.

Since then, his "caliphate" has shrunk significantly in Iraq after an alliance between the US-led coalition and Iran-backed Shia jihadists in the now official Popular Mobilisation Forces (PMF) and the Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) recaptured many cities from Daesh.

His exact location is not clear. Reports have said he may be in the Daesh-held city of Mosul, Iraq, or in territory to the west of the city, close to the border with Syria.

Kurdish officials believe that growing pressure resulting from a coalition military assault on Mosul is causing Al-Baghdadi and his top lieutenants to move around and try to hide themselves.

Asia & AmericasIraqMiddle EastNewsSyriaUS
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