Army Gen. Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told reporters Monday at the Pentagon that the military working dog injured during the raid that killed Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi has been returned to duty.
President Donald Trump told reporters Sunday that a military working dog had been wounded during the American commando raid after chasing the elusive ISIS leader down a dead-end tunnel.
Al-Baghdadi detonated a suicide vest killing himself and three children in the tunnel with him, according to Trump.
Milley said the dog was only “slightly wounded” and was fully recovering. The dog, he explained, was still in theater and returned to duty with his handler.
Al-Baghdadi’s last moments alive were spent in “panic and dread” as the ISIS leader was “terrified of the American forces bearing down on him," and he died “whimpering and crying and screaming” like a coward, Trump told reporters Sunday.
The name of the dog is not being released due to the classification of the unit involved in the raid.
“We are not releasing the name of the dog right now,” Milley said.
Nearly 100 American commandos launched a heliborne nighttime raid near al-Qaida infested Idlib province, Syria, Saturday night.
U.S. forces moving by CH-47 helicopters took fire from local forces as they flew towards the compound housing al-Baghdadi, Trump detailed Sunday. U.S. forces returned fire from the air, eliminating the threat.
Milley told reporters that two adult males were pulled off the objective and taken into U.S. military custody at a secure facility.
Milley provided no other details about the detainees captured during the al-Baghdadi raid.
Baghdadi’s remains were taken to a secure facility where they were identified, Milley said Monday. The ISIS leaders remains were disposed of in accordance with the law of armed conflict, he said.