A police officer, who was investigating the recent wave of bombings in Turkish-occupied city of al-Bab in the northern countryside of Aleppo, has been assassinated.
The officer, 1st Lt. Abdullah Sheikhani, was reportedly starting his SUV, a Hyundai Santa Fe, on the noon of August 15 in al-Bab’s city center when an improvised explosive device, that had been planted under the vehicle, exploded. Sheikhani was quickly hospitalized. Nevertheless, he died of his wounds.
ISIS claimed responsibility for the assassination in a short statement shared by its news agency, Amaq. The group said Sheikhani was an “apostate”.
According to Enab Baladi, a pro-opposition news outlet, Sheikhani was the head of the “evidence unit” in the Free Syrian Police, a law enforcement body backed by Turkey.
“Sheikhani was overseeing the car bomb and IED cases in the city [of al-Bab],” Haitham al-Shehabi, a police advisor, told Enab Baladi.
In the last few months, a series of bombings rocked al-Bab, claiming the lives of civilians and Turkish-backed militants. ISIS claimed responsibility for some of the attacks, while others were blamed on Kurdish forces.
The assassination of 1st Lt. Sheikhani demonstrates ISIS’ ever growing influence in Turkish-occupied areas in northern Aleppo.