A TOP ISIS chief described as a “treasure trove of intelligence” is reportedly “singing like a canary” after being captured.
Abdul Nasser Al-Qardash, who was one tipped to rule the terror group, is said to be giving up the fanatics’ darkest secrets.
Iraqi forces announced he had been arrested on Wednesday.
However it has now been claimed that he was has been in custody for over a year after surrendering to the Syrian Democratic Forces in March 2019 – but only handed over to the Iraqis in recent days.
Security analyst Husham al-Hashimi told Rudaw TV that Qardash was originally arrested after the battle for the last ISIS stronghold of Baghouz, eastern Syria.
He said the reasons for the delay in handing him over were down to the diplomatic issues of transferring such a high-level operative from Syria to Iraq.
He added however that the former ISIS rising star has already been “singing like a canary” while in SDF custody.
Hashimi said: "Qardash was held in an SDF prison, under the supervision of the coalition forces – specifically the coalition's US forces.”
“The transfer of such a Daesh leader from Syria to Iraq entails a lot of protocol and diplomatic effort.”
According to Hashimi, an investigation into Qardash was continuous throughout his detention at Haqil al-Omar prison.
Iraqi intelligence officers frequently visited him at the prison to interrogate him, and the Iraqis were able to force Qardash to reveal a lot of information on Daesh.
Hashimi said: "He is a treasure trove of information for the Iraqi government – one that can clarify and identify a lot of key information for the Iraqi government on Daesh, including fund sources, intelligence, their operations in foreign countries, and their internal management.”
He added: “There will be many interrogation sessions with the Daesh leader [Qardash], to extract as much information from him as possible on Daesh's new strategy under the leadership of Abu Ibrahim al-Quraishi."
Hashimi also revealed there are between 3,500-4,000 active militants and 8,000-9,000 inactive Daesh militants still left in Iraq.
Al-Qardash was head of one of the terror group's top commanders and served under Abu Musab Al-Zarqawi, who led one of the groups that preceded ISIS.
The extraordinary claim comes as it’s believed thousands of ISIS fanatics have escaped Syrian prisons in mass break-outs.
Unconfirmed reports state ISIS terrorists escaped from Ayed prison in Al Tabqah province west of Raqqa.
The prisoners are believed to have escaped in coordination with a group outside the prison.
The prison is under the control of YPG – who are widely regarded as one of the most effective forces in the fight against ISIS.
There are thousands of ISIS fighters in the prison providing a significant threat to the wider region if they escape.
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