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UN chief voices concern over civilian casualties in U.S. raid on IS leader

UN chief Antonio Guterres

United Nations | Xinhua | UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Thursday expressed concern over the civilian casualties in a U.S. raid that led to the death of Islamic State (IS) leader Abu Ibrahim al-Hashimi al-Qurayshi.

Asked for the secretary-general’s comment on the U.S. operation in Syria against al-Qurayshi, Farhan Haq, Guterres’ deputy spokesman, said: “We’ve taken note of the announcement by the U.S. president of the death of Abu Ibrahim al-Qurayshi, the leader of Da’esh. We note with concern reports of civilian casualties.”

Da’esh is the Arabic acronym of the IS terrorist group.

“We continue to call on all the parties to take all necessary measures to protect civilians and civilian infrastructure in line with their obligations under international humanitarian law,” said Haq.

In the case of trying to determine responsibility for casualties from attack, it would be important to have an investigation, he said.

“Da’esh has committed heinous crimes and brought tragedy and death to thousands of men, women, and children. And we want to take this moment to remember the victims and families of victims of terrorism everywhere in the world. And, of course, as you know, the UN system as a whole has been very united in efforts to act against Da’esh. So any successes against them are to be welcomed,” he said.

Al-Qurayshi reportedly detonated a bomb that killed himself and members of his family during the overnight raid by U.S. special operations forces in the town of Atmeh in the northwestern Idlib governorate of Syria. Thirteen people were reportedly killed, including six children and four women.



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