If Baghdadi is dead, next IS leader likely to be Saddam-era officer

If Baghdadi is dead, next IS leader likely to be Saddam-era officer

If Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi is confirmed dead, he is likely to be succeeded by one of his top two lieutenants, both of whom were Iraqi army officers under late dictator Saddam Hussein, Reuters reported.

Experts on Islamist groups see no clear successor but regard Iyad al-Obaidi and Ayad al-Jumaili as the leading contenders, though neither would be likely to assume Baghdadi's title of "caliph", or overall commander of Muslims.

Obaidi, who is in his 50s, has been serving as war minister. Jumaili, in his late 40s, is head of the group's Amniya security agency. In April Iraqi state TV said Jumaili had been killed, but that was not confirmed.

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