The successor of Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, who was killed in a raid in Syria last week, is said to be a scholar, well-known warrior and “emir of war,” the terrorist group revealed Thursday.
In audio released by the ISIS central media arm, al-Furgan Foundation, the terrorist group confirmed Baghdadi’s death and named his successor as Abu Ibrahim al-Hashimi al-Qurayhi.
It provided no other details about Qurayshi – except that he could allegedly trace his lineage, like Baghdadi, to the Prophet Muhammad’s Quraysh tribe.
ISIS typically identifies its leaders using noms de guerre that refer to their tribal affiliation and lineage.
"So don't rejoice America for the death of Sheik al-Baghdadi," the speaker said. "Don't you know America that the state (ISIS) today is at the doorstep of Europe and is in Central Africa? It is also expanding and remaining from east to west." The speaker was referencing the slogan ISIS used at the height of its successes: "Remaining and expanding."
Baghdadi was killed in a raid by U.S. troops at an ISIS compound in Syria’s northern Idlib province last Saturday. He died after detonating an explosive vest after running into a tunnel as troops pursued him.
Two children Baghdadi had dragged with him were also killed by the explosion. In all, U.S. forces killed six ISIS members – four women and another man aside from Baghdadi – in the raid.
The Pentagon on Wednesday released video footage of the raid.
A DNA test conducted onsite confirmed Baghdadi’s identity before he was later buried at sea, President Trump said Sunday. A military dog, identified as “Conan,” has made a full recovery after being injured in the explosion. The pup is expected to visit the White House next week after leaving the Middle East.
The death of Baghdadi was a milestone in the fight against ISIS, which brutalized swaths of Syria and Iraq and sought to direct a global campaign from a self-declared “caliphate.” A years-long campaign by American and allied forces led to the recapture of the group's territorial holding, but its violent ideology has continued to inspire attacks.
On Thursday, the speaker in the ISIS audio also confirmed the death of Abu Hassan al-Muhajir, a close aide of Baghdadi who was believed to have been his potential successor. He had served as a spokesman for the group since 2016.
He was killed in a joint U.S. operation with Kurdish forces in Jarablus in northern Syria on Sunday, hours after Baghdadi blew himself up during the raid.
The new spokesman, named Abu Hamza al-Qurayshi, urged followers to pledge allegiance to the new Caliph and addressed the Americans, saying: "Don't rejoice."
"The Shura Council met immediately after confirming the martyrdom of Sheik Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. The leaders of the Mujahedeen agreed after consultation with their brethren and acting according to the will (of al-Baghdadi) they pledged allegiance to Abu Ibrahim al-Hashimi al-Qurayshi as the new leader of the Believers."
Fox News' Andrew O'Reilly, Nicole Darrah, and the Associated Press contributed to this report.