WASHINGTON — The Pentagon said Tuesday that a US airstrike in Syria last week targeted Tarkhan Tayumurazovich Batirashvili, Minister of War of the extremist group, the Islamic State (IS).

The airstrike occurred on March 4 near al Shaddadi, Syria, targeted Batirashvili, the Georgian-born Senior IS leader, also known as “Omar the Chechen”, said Pentagon spokesman Peter Cook, adding that the Pentagon was still assessing the results of this operation.

According to a US political website the Hill, initial assessments indicated that Batirashvili was likely killed along with other 12 IS fighters, a US defense official who spoke on condition of anonymity was quoted as saying.

Cook added that Batirashvili held numerous top military positions, including the minister of war, within the IS and his potential removal would negatively affect the IS ability to recruit foreign fighters, especially those from Chechnya and the Caucasus regions. PNA/Xinhua/