By BASSEM MROUE
BEIRUT (AP) — The spokesman for the Islamic State group says its leader Abu al-Hassan al-Hashimi al-Qurayshi was killed in battle recently. The spokesman did not give further details in the audio released Wednesday. Al-Qurayshi is the second IS leader to be killed this year at a time when the extremist group has been trying to rise again with its sleeper cells carrying out deadly attacks in Iraq and Syria. Little had been known about al-Qurayshi, who took over the group’s leadership following the death of his predecessor, Abu Ibrahim al-Hashimi al-Qurayshi, in a U.S. raid in February in northwest Syria.