US raises bounty on ISIS leader’s head to $25 million

This file photo taken on July 5, 2014 shows the leader of the Islamic State, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, speaking in Mosul. (AFP)

The United States on Friday more than doubled its previous reward for information on ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, offering $25 million for information that would help locate, arrest or convict the head of the militant group.

The US State Department's Rewards for Justice program previously offered $10 million for information on Baghdadi, announced in October 2011. The increase was announced in a statement on Friday.

Baghdadi, an Iraqi whose real name is Ibrahim al-Samarrai, declared himself the caliph of a huge swath of Iraq and Syria two years ago.

His exact location is not clear. Reports have said he may be in the ISIS-held city of Mosul, Iraq, or in ISIS-held territory to the west of the city, close to the border with Syria.

Kurdish officials believe that growing pressure resulting from a coalition military assault on Mosul is causing Baghdadi and his top lieutenants to move around and try to hide themselves.

Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:53 - GMT 06:53