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ISIS’ Kidnapping of Security Officials Turns into Public Opinion Case in Iraq

ISIS’ Kidnapping of Security Officials Turns into Public Opinion Case in Iraq

Thursday, 28 June, 2018 - 06:30
Members of the Iraqi Counter-Terrorism Service (CTS) take part in a training drill at the Special Forces Academy near Baghdad's international airport on March 19, 2018, as Iraq marks the 15th anniversary of the US invasion. (Photo by AFP)

The Diyala Operations Command launched Wednesday a full-scale security operation in the governorate aimed at finding six persons who disappeared last week on a road linking Baghdad to Kirkuk and whose case turned into a public opinion.

“Joint groups of Armed Forces in collaboration with the military intelligence launched wide military operations in three hubs to find the six abductees in the area of Hamrin, located between the Qura Tiba village and the Baghdad-Kirkuk road,” a statement from the Diyala Operations Command said.

The search operation came few days after ISIS terrorists released a video showing six men with their faces covered in bruises, identifying themselves as either members of the police or the Popular Mobilization Forces.

Following news about the kidnapping, the social media networks published videos showing the children of some of the six kidnapped Iraqi officials, demanding the government, the commander of the armed forces and PM Haider to act for their release.

Report spread earlier revealed that ISIS terrorists would trade the six abductees with female ISIS inmates, currently present in Iraqi prisons.

The terrorists threatened in a video that they would decapitate the abductees in three days unless the government released the female ISIS inmates.

Earlier, some reports said three of the six Iraqi people abducted by ISIS have been freed in return for ransom. However, those reports were later denied.

An Iraqi official denied on Wednesday that the government had engaged in negotiations with ISIS to secure the release of the six abductees.

He told Asharq Al-Awsat there are no negotiations, whatsoever, with this terrorist organization, which he said caused the killing of Iraqis from all sects, colors and entities.

In parallel with this operation, limited in the area of Hamrin Mountains between Diyala and Kirkuk, the Anbar Operations Command announced that ISIS tunnels were destroyed in five coalition raids in Al-Salajiyya area in western Anbar.

“The tunnels were being used as a hideout by ISIS militants,” the statement said.

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