BAGHDAD/Washington -  Ayad al-Jumaili, believed to be the deputy of Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, has been killed in an air strike, Iraqi State TV said on Saturday, citing Iraqi military intelligence.

The US-led anti-Islamic State coalition said it was unable at the moment to confirm the report. Iraqi TV said Jumaili was killed with other Islamic State commanders in a strike carried out by the Iraqi air force in the region of al-Qaim, near the border with Syria. It gave no detail or date for the raid.

“The air force’s planes executed with accuracy a strike on the headquarters of Daesh in al-Qaim .. resulting in the killing of Daesh’s second-in-command...Ayad al-Jumaili, alias Abu Yahya, the war minister,” said state TV, citing a statement from the directorate of military intelligence.

Iraqi forces, backed by a US-led coalition, have been battling since October to retake the city of Mosul, Islamic State’s stronghold in Iraq and the city where Baghdadi declared a caliphate nearly three years ago. Tens of thousands of refugees have been fleeing the city to escape the fighting.

US-led strikes ‘caused’ 229 civilian deaths since 2014: Pentagon

Air strikes by the US-led coalition against the Islamic State group have likely “unintentionally” killed 229 civilians since the offensive began in 2014, according to US Central Command.

The tally does not include civilian casualties from March - which could include potentially large numbers of civilians killed in strikes over several days in Mosul’s al-Jadida area. Attention has focused on one allegedly particularly deadly strike on March 17.

Stephen Townsend, the senior US commander in Iraq, said coalition forces “probably had a role in those casualties.”

The coalition has said it has launched an investigation into the reported deaths.

Iraq is also probing the deadly air strikes in the western district of Mosul al-Jadida, where the number of victims is said to range from dozens to hundreds.

The battle for Mosul began in October 2016.

As of the end of February 2017, “it is more likely than not, at least 229 civilians have been unintentionally killed by coalition strikes since the start of Operation Inherent Resolve” in Iraq and Syria, according to the statement from Centcom, the US military command in the Middle East.

Some 43 different reports of possible civilian deaths in the two countries are still under investigation by the coalition, the statement said.

Critics, including monitoring groups, say the real number is much higher.

The coalition insists that the IS group has targeted civilians and used them as human shields, making it difficult to avoid civilian casualties despite its state-of-the-art technology.