The Islamic State on Thursday confirmed the death of its leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, and announced his successor, four days after President Trump triumphantly announced that Mr. al-Baghdadi had blown himself up during a raid by American forces on his hide-out in northern Syria.
In an announcement by the Islamic State’s propaganda arm, the group also confirmed that its former spokesman, Abu al-Hassan al-Muhajir, had been killed, which happened in a separate strike after Mr. al-Baghdadi’s death.
The Islamic State’s announcement was reported on the Twitter account of the Site Intelligence Group, which monitors the online content of the Islamic State and other extremist militant groups.
The announcement said Mr. al-Baghdadi had been succeeded as the Islamic State’s leader by Ibrahim al-Hashemi al-Qurayshi, whom it identified as the “emir of the believers” and “caliph.” Mr. al-Qurayshi appeared to be largely unknown, at least outside the ranks of the organization.
Mr. al-Baghdadi, 48, led the world’s most fearsome terrorist group for years. His death came eight months after American-led forces in Syria seized the last remnants of the territory once held by the Islamic State, which at its height spanned an area the size of Britain across parts of Syria and Iraq.
The al-Qurayshi appellation at the end of the new leader’s name indicates that he is considered to have been descended from the Quraysh tribe of the Prophet Muhammad, a lineage that the Islamic State considers to be a prerequisite for becoming a caliph or ruler.
Its use indicates that the Islamic State continues to see itself as a caliphate, even if it is one with practically no territory.