US President Donald Trump announced that fugitive Daesh leader Abu Bakr al Baghdadi had died in a raid by US special forces in northwest Syria.

Daesh leader Abu Bakr al Baghdadi speaks in this screen grab taken from video released on April 29, 2019.
Daesh leader Abu Bakr al Baghdadi speaks in this screen grab taken from video released on April 29, 2019. (Reuters Archive)

Now-deceased Daesh leader Abu Bakr al Baghdadi left behind a horrific trail of beheadings, mass executions, rapes, abductions and ethnic cleansing in his five years as the self-proclaimed "caliph" of Iraq and Syria.

Here is how world leaders have reacted to news of his death: 

France on high alert, will continue to fight against Daesh

"Al-Baghdadi's death is a hard blow against Islamic State [Daesh], but it is just a stage. With our partners in the international coalition, the fight continues to finally defeat this terrorist organisation. It is our priority in the Middle East," Macron said on his Twitter feed.

French Interior Minister Christophe Castaner, in a letter to police prefects seen by Reuters, called for increased vigilance to prevent possible revenge attacks.

Iran says Baghdadi's death does not mean the end of Daesh

Iran said on Sunday the death of Baghdadi will not mean the end of the group and its ideology, Iranian government spokesman Ali Rabiei tweeted.

"The killing of Baghdadi will not end Daesh and its ideology ... which was created and flourished with the help of regional petrodollars," Rabiei tweeted, in a clear reference to Tehran's regional rival Saudi Arabia.

Iraq says it contributed to locating Baghdadi's hideout

"Following extensive work by a dedicated team for over a year, Iraq’s National Intelligence Service was able to accurately pinpoint the hideout of the terrorist Abu Bakr Al Baghdadi in the Syrian province of Idlib," an Iraqi government statement said.

"Subsequently, U.S. forces, in coordination with Iraq’s National Intelligence Service, carried out an operation which led to the elimination of the terrorist Al Baghdadi," it added.

Russia says there are contradictory details

"The defence ministry does not have reliable information about the actions of the US army in the Idlib 'de-escalation' zone...concerning the umpteenth 'death'" of Baghdadi, Russian defence ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov said in a statement.

He said there were "contradictory details" which raised "legitimate questions and doubts about the success of this American operation".

"We are unaware of any alleged assistance to the flying of US aviation into the airspace of the Idlib de-escalation zone during this operation," Konashenkov was quoted by RIA as saying.

Turkey welcomes the operation, will continue to fight terror

"The killing of Daesh's ringleader marks a turning point in our joint fight against terrorism," Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said. 

He said Turkey would "continue to support anti-terror efforts – as it has done in the past".

"I am confident that a decisive struggle against terrorism, in line with the spirit of alliance, will bring peace to all of humanity."

United Kingdom says the battle against Daesh is not over

"The death of Baghdadi is an important moment in our fight against terror but the battle against the evil of Daesh is not yet over," British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Twitter.

"We will work with our coalition partners to bring an end to the murderous, barbaric activities of Daesh once and for all."

Source: TRTWorld and agencies