IS Finance Chief Captured, Claims Iraq
By: Atrij Sharma
Sami Jasim al-Jaburi, the chief of IS’s finances and deputy of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, was caught in Northeast Syria and was shortly detained in Turkey after being lured over the border, as per the latest Reuters’ reports. The Iraqi government said he was also a close aide to current ISIS leader, Abu Ibrahim al-Hashemi al-Quraishi. In addition, he was a confidant to Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, a jihadist insurgent who was the leader of al-Qaeda between 2004 to 2006.
Reuters reported on Tuesday that a senior regional security source and two Iraqi security sources told that Jasim had been in northwestern Syria and that Turkish intelligence had been key to his capture. The sources spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were discussing covert operations.
However, Iraqi and Turkish government officials have denied the sources’ accounts.
According to initial reports, on 11th October, Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi described that Sami was arrested in “a special operation outside the borders”, never giving the details of when and where he was seized. He tweeted, “While our ISF [Iraqi Security Force] heroes focused on securing the elections, their INIS [Iraqi National Intelligence Services] colleagues were conducting a complex external operation to capture Sami Jasim, who was in charge of Daesh finance, and a deputy of Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi.”
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At the pinnacle of his influence, Sami Jasim, also known as Hajji Hamid, was handling finances of approximately $1bn of revenues a year from income sources like “illegal law transactions” to “extortion, ransoms, human trafficking, antiquities smuggling and donations from sympathizers in the Middle East”, As per The Times’ reports.
The US state department had offered a $5m reward on information leading to his arrest.
The terrorist’s arrest could assist in yielding crucial and significant information about the cross-border “caliphate” and eradicate the remaining pro-IS ideology radicals and its dissemination.
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