Islamic State chief Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi poisoned at feast

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BAGHDAD:Islamic State chief Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi and three of his top aides have fallen ill after being poisoned at a feast, Iraqi news agency WAAreports.

They have been shifted to an undisclosed location under strict measures, reports say. The lunch prepared for Baghdadi and three other Islamic State leaders was allegedly poisoned in Iraq’s Be’aaj district, it has been reported.

Earlier this year, the Pentagon warned Baghdadi that he would eventually “taste justice” as the US military continued to target the extremist group’s upper ranks. “We are hunting him, and we will find him,” military spokesperson Colonel Steve Warren said.

“Just like we found his mentor (Abu Musab) al-Zarqawi and killed him. Just like we found the grand master of terrorism, Osama bin Laden, we killed him. We are going to find Baghdadi, and he will taste justice,” he said.

Born in Iraq in 1971, Baghdadi emerged as the leader of an al Qaeda offshoot which later became Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS), in 2010.

In 2015, Islamic State proclaimed its leader Baghdadi  as “caliph” – the head of the state.  Baghdadi aspires to establish a global caliphate with himself at its head.

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