In a surprise announcement today (30 November), the Islamic State- through its official spokesman Abu Omar al-Muhajir- announced the killing of its 'caliph' Abu al-Hasan al-Hashimi al-Qurashi without revealing any specific details apart from the fact that he was killed during fighting. His successor was declared to be Abu al-Hussein al-Husseini al-Qurashi. Hours after the announcement, CENTCOM put out a statement saying that Abu al-Hasan was killed by the 'Free Syrian Army' in Syria's southern province of Deraa. The statement however made no mention of coordination with the U.S.-led coalition in the killing of Abu al-Hasan, and it has been clarified that the U.S. had no role in this matter.
Thus, two important conclusions are to be drawn:
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