1st Special Forces Operational Detachment-Delta Kills Senior ISIS leader

Abu Sayyaf, head of ISIS’ oil and gas operations, was killed during a raid in Syria.


The nighttime raid took place near the Omar Oil Field. The target was a two story building where intelligence indicated Abu Sayyaf was located. A U.S. Defense official, speaking under condition of anonymity, said it was a team of Delta operators flying in on CV-22 Ospreys and UH-60 Black Hawks who executed the raid.

Abu Sayyaf's wife, Umm Sayyaf, was taken into custody under suspicion she operated an ISIS human trafficking ring and had intelligence regarding other ISIS leaders. Delta also found and freed a young Yazidi slave, who is currently being flown to reunite with her family in Iraq.


After Delta landed, a tense firefight ensued, resulting in the deaths of 32 ISIS technicals, including three leaders and Abu Sayyaf, only after he tried to engage the Delta operators. “The US operation killed 32 members of ISIS, among them four officials, including ISIS oil chief Abu Sayyaf, the deputy ISIS defence minister, and an ISIS communications official,” said Rami Abdel Rahman, head of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. Some engagements at close quarters led to hand-to-hand combat, a rarity during missions. During exfiltration, the CV-22 Ospreys and UH-60 Black Hawks took heavy fire, but no U.S. personnel were wounded or killed.


Abu Sayyaf's removal has temporarily halted ISIS oil-revenue operations, critical to the group’s ability to carry out military operations in Syria and Iraq.

This article will be updated as new information comes to light.

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