Gulmurod Khalimov: Daesh’s new (US and Russia-trained) military leader in Iraq
You can’t make this stuff up. Colonel Gulmurod Khalimov-the chief of an elite police unit in Tajikistan-joined Daesh (ISIS) in May of 2015 after beign reported as missing in Tajikistan. As fast a climber in Daesh (ISIS) as he was in Tajikistan, he’s now the group’s military leader in Iraq. And perhaps most interestingly, he was trained in the US and by Russia.
This training is what makes Khalimov notable. The former policeman claims to have been trained in the southern US city of Baton Rouge numerous times, including by Blackwater-the private military company now known as Academi. Moreover, Khalimov claims he trained with elite Russian spetsnaz forces, also while a policeman in Tajikistan.
The Americans and Russians didn’t rub him the right way, however, and he has vowed to bring jihad to both countries.
Iraq’s Al Sumaria News reported that Khalimov became Daesh’s military leader in Iraq on Saturday, citing a security official in Nineveh. And now the tables have turned on his relationship with the states. The US currently has a $3 million bounty on Khalimov’s head.
Khalimov’s promotion comes at a time of a few leadership changes for the group. Daesh spokesman Abu Muhammad al-Adnani was killed in an apparent Russian airstrike in August.
And Khalimov is not the first US-trained leader of Daesh. Daesh’s former military head in Syria-Omar al-Shishani-received training from the US while a member of the Georgian army. Al-Shishani was reportedly killed in a US airstrike in March.
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