HRW: Daesh killed 300 former policemen

Iraqi security forces search Shiite pilgrims marching toward Karbala for the Arbaeen ritual in Baghdad, Iraq, on Tuesday. (AP)
Updated 17 November 2016
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HRW: Daesh killed 300 former policemen

BAGHDAD: Daesh militants probably killed more than 300 Iraqi former police three weeks ago and buried them in a mass grave near the town of Hammam Al-Alil south of Mosul, Human Rights Watch said on Thursday.
A Reuters reporter visited the site of the mass grave, where residents said the ultra-hard-line militants buried victims who had been shot or beheaded. The residents said they believed up to 200 people were killed in the weeks before Daesh withdrew from the town.
Human Rights Watch said some of the former policemen were separated from a group of about 2,000 people from nearby villages and towns who were forced to march alongside the militants last month as they retreated north to Mosul and the town of Tal Afar.
It quoted a laborer who said he saw Daesh fighters drive four large trucks carrying 100 to 125 men, some of whom he recognized as former policemen, past an agricultural college close to the site which was to become the mass grave.
Minutes later, he heard automatic gunfire and cries of distress, he said. The next night, on Oct. 29, a similar scene was repeated, with between 130 to 145 men, he told HRW.
Another witness, a resident of Hammam Al-Alil, said he heard automatic gunfire in the area for approximately seven minutes, three nights in a row.
“This is another piece of evidence of the horrific mass murder by Daesh of former law enforcement officers in and around Mosul,” said Joe Stork, deputy Middle East director at Human Rights Watch. “Daesh should be held accountable for these crimes against humanity.”


Iran: Various options to neutralize ‘illegal’ US sanctions oil exports

Updated 52 min 18 sec ago
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Iran: Various options to neutralize ‘illegal’ US sanctions oil exports

  • ‘Apart from closing Strait of Hormuz, we have other options to stop oil flow if threatened’
  • ‘Iran has plans in place that will neutralize the illegal US sanctions against Iran’s oil exports’

DUBAI: Iran said on Saturday it had many options to neutralize the reimposition of US sanctions on its oil exports, the semi-official Tasnim news agency reported, adding that Tehran’s clerical rulers had no plans to hold talks with Washington.
“Apart from closing Strait of Hormuz, we have other options to stop oil flow if threatened ... The US administration lacks ‘goodwill’, no need to hold talks with America,” Secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council Ali Shamkhani told Tasnim.
“Iran has plans in place that will neutralize the illegal US sanctions against Iran’s oil exports,” Shamkhani said.
Tensions between Iran and the United States increased after US President Donald Trump pulled out of a 2015 nuclear deal between Iran and six world powers last May, and then reimposed sanctions on the Islamic Republic.
Washington aims to force Tehran to end its nuclear program and its support of militant groups in Syria and Iraq.
Iranian officials have threatened to disrupt oil shipments from the Gulf countries if Washington tries to strangle Tehran’s oil exports.
Carrying one-third of the world’s seaborne oil every day, the Strait of Hormuz links Middle East crude producers to key markets in Asia Pacific, Europe, North America and beyond.
Shamkhani also said Iran has achieved 90 percent of its goals in Syria, Tasnim reported.
The threat of direct confrontation between arch-enemies Israel and Iran has long simmered in Syria, where the Iranian military built a presence early in the nearly eight-year civil war to help President Bashar Assad’s government.