by WorldTribune Staff, February 13, 2019
A notorious Islamic State (ISIS) jihadist from Indonesia, who was filmed beheading a Western hostage in 2016, was killed in a battle with U.S.-backed forces amid the terror organization’s last stand in Syria, reports say.
Muhammad Saifuddin was killed in eastern Deir Ezzor province on Jan. 29 when he was hit by shrapnel from a tank attack, Indonesian National Police spokesman Dedi Prasetyo said, according to The Australian newspaper.
Saifuddin, a veteran terrorist from Indonesia, was confirmed dead by police and family members, the Daily Mail reported.
Related: Last ISIS fighters down to ‘final battle’ in Syria against U.S.-backed Kurds, February 12, 2019
The U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) have launched an offensive aimed at driving ISIS from its last major area of influence in Syria.
The 40-year-old Saifuddin was seen beheading an ISIS captive in a 2016 video. The propaganda video showed him along with two other militants from Malaysia and the Philippines killing three foreigners, including Japanese journalist Kenji Goto, who were dressed in orange jumpsuits and forced to kneel before being slain.
The U.S. placed Saifuddin on a special global counter-terrorism list last August.
Saifuddin, also known as Abu Walid and Mohammed Karim Yusop Faiz, was also a recruiter for ISIS.
“Abu Walid (Saifuddin) was a veteran terrorist. In Syria, he was known as an executioner and he has influence and a big role among Indonesian militants in Syria. We hope the death of Abu Walid will demoralize militants in Syria and at home,” Prasetyo said.
Saifuddin’s brother, Muinudinillah Basri, said the family learned of the jihadist’s death via an instant messaging app, saying, “There was a photo of his body and I can recognize it,” the Daily Mail reported.