PM welcomes death of murderous al-Baghdadi

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The death of Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi in a US strike in Syria is a significant blow for the “perverted” terror group, Scott Morrison says.

“He led a murderous, terrorist group responsible for widespread misery and destruction across large parts of Iraq and Syria,” the prime minister said in a statement on Monday.

“Al-Baghdadi’s death is a significant blow to ISIS and another important step in preventing its revitalisation.”

But Mr Morrison said this was not the end of ISIS, warning the group’s “perverted ideology” continued to pose a national security threat.

“Australia will continue to work closely with coalition partners and the wider international community to counter ISIS, including by stemming their financing and stopping terrorist groups using the internet as a tool of recruitment and propaganda.”

US President Donald Trump has given a detailed account of how al-Baghdadi was chased by special forces and army dogs before getting trapped in a tunnel during the raid at a compound in Syria’s Idlib province.

He was “whimpering and crying and screaming”, according to Mr Trump, before setting off a suicide vest, killing himself and three of his children.

Al-Baghdadi’s identity was confirmed by an on-site DNA test.