MALAYSIAN MILITANT ‘ABU AFGHAN’ THE LATEST KILLED IN IRAQ

A member of the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), made up of an alliance of Arab and Kurdish fighters, removes an Islamic State group flag in the town of Tabqa, about 55 kilometres (35 miles) west of Raqa city, on April 30, 2017, as they advance in their battle for the group's de facto capital. US-backed fighters have captured 80 percent of Syria's Tabqa from the Islamic State group, a monitor said on May 1, a week after they first entered the town. / AFP PHOTO / DELIL SOULEIMAN

KUALA LUMPUR – Another Malay­sian Islamic State (IS) fighter, identified as Mohd Nizam Ariffin, has been killed in clashes with security forces in Iraq.

The 38-year-old militant, also known as Abu Afghan, was killed in the city of Mosul on Friday.

Intelligence sources indicated Mohd Nizam’s death, but no other details were available.

It is learnt that Mohd Nizam appeared in an IS propaganda video in January last year along with fellow militant Abdul Halid Dari.

Identifying themselves as members of Katibah Nusantara (the Malay-speaking wing of IS), the militants called on Katibah’s “brothers” from Somalia’s al-Shabaab to join the group in the “real frontline in Syria”.

“They spoke in Bahasa Malaysia and urged the al-Shabaab members to join IS.

“The Katibah militants also warned the Malaysian Government against thwarting IS terror plots,” another source said.

According to other sources, the Ipoh-born Mohd Nizam travelled to Syria on March 6, 2014, and joined the Ajnad al-Sham militant group.

“However, after the death of former Kedah PAS Youth information chief Lotfi Ariffin in September 2014, Mohd Nizam joined IS.

“It was in IS that he teamed up with other militants from Malaysia and Indonesia in Katibah Nusan­tara,” a source said.

Mohd Nizam’s death brings the total of Malaysian militants killed in Iraq and Syria to 31, with some 56 others believed to be still at large.

– ANN

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