Trump hails capture of five Daesh commanders

Iraq used Baghdadi aide's cell phone to capture top Daesh commanders

In a tweet this afternoon, the United States leader said: "Five Most Wanted leaders of ISIS just captured!". Trump wrote in a post on Twitter, providing no further details.

The New York Times, citing two unidentified Iraqi officials, reported that the five included Ismail Alwaan al-Ithawi, who is described as a top aide to Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the secretive leader of the Islamic State's so-called caliphate that he declared in 2014.

The U.S. -led coalition used the intel to launch an airstrike last month that took the lives of 39 suspected ISiS militants in Syria, according to the Times.

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Iraqi agents then used the Telegram messaging app on his mobile phone to lure four commanders from the group to cross the border from Syria into Iraq and into a trap, security advisor Hisham al-Hashimi told Reuters on Thursday.

The U.S. -led coalition supported Iraqi ground forces and Syrian fighters known as the Syrian Democratic Forces in the more than three-year war against ISIS. An official said of al-Baghdadi: "His movements are discreet and he never travels in a convoy".

He thought to be hiding in eastern Syria and surrounded by only a small group of trusted followers, an Iraqi intelligence official said. The Iraqi air force has carried out several airstrikes since previous year against ISIS positions in Syrian territory.

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The militant group swept into Iraq in the summer of 2014, taking control of almost a third of the country. But the militants still pose a threat along the border with Syria and have continued to carry out ambushes, killings and bombings across Iraq.

The leaders were taken in Iraq after months of strategic planning by the US, including the CIA, Turkey and Iraqi forces.

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