Topic: Abu Omar al-Baghdadi

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Hamid Dawud Mohamed Khalil al Zawi, most commonly known as Abu Abdullah al-Rashid al-Baghdadi (ابو عبدالله الراشد البغدادي), and also known as Abu Hamza al-Baghdadi and Abu Omar al-Qurashi al-Baghdadi, (died April 18, 2010) is the nom de guerre of the person purported to be the leader (or emir) of the former Mujahideen Shura Council (also known as the "Council of Freedom Fighters", the "Consultative Council of Mujahedeen", and the "Council of Holy Warriors"), an umbrella organization composed of eight groups that oppose the United States' military presence in Iraq, and purported to be the head of the Islamic State of Iraq.

The Interior Ministry of Iraq claimed that al-Baghdadi was captured in Baghdad on March 9, 2007, but it was later said that the person in question was not al-Baghdadi. On May 3, 2007, the Iraqi Interior Ministry said that al-Baghdadi was killed by American and Iraqi forces north of Baghdad. However, in July 2007, the U.S. military reported that al-Baghdadi never actually existed. The detainee identified as Khaled al-Mashhadani, a self-proclaimed intermediary to Osama bin Laden, claimed that al-Baghdadi was a fictional character created to give an Iraqi face to a foreign-run terror group, and that statements attributed to al-Baghdadi were actually read by an Iraqi actor.

In March 2008 the spokesman for an insurgent organization that is hostile to the Coalition, Hamas-Iraq, claimed that al-Baghdadi is a fabrication made by Al Qaeda to put a false Iraqi face to their organization. However, US military officials later reported that in 2008, the Al Qaeda replaced Baghdadi with an actual Al Qaeda leader.

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