Isis Leader Al-Baghdadi Incapacitated With Spinal Injuries After Air Strike

Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi wounded in a U.S. airstrike in March

The leader of the Islamic State (Isis), Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi remains incapacitated due to suspected spinal damage and is being treated by two doctors who travel to his hideout from the group’s stronghold of Mosul, the Guardian has learned.

More than two months after being injured in a US air strike in north-western Iraq, the self-proclaimed caliph is yet to resume command of the terror group that has been rampaging through Iraq and Syria since June last year. Three sources close to Isis have confirmed that Baghdadi’s wounds could mean he will never again lead the organisation.

Isis is now being led by a long-term senior official, Abu Alaa al-Afri, who had been appointed deputy leader when his predecessor was killed by an air strike late last year.

Details of Baghdadi’s condition, and of the physicians treating him, have emerged since the Guardian revealed he had been seriously wounded on 18 March in an air strike that killed three men he was travelling with. The attack took place in al-Baaj, 80 miles (128km) west of Mosul.