Iraq sentenced 616 foreigners for Daesh links in 2018

Around 20,000 people suspected of links to Daesh have been arrested since 2014. (AFP)
Updated 31 December 2018

Iraq sentenced 616 foreigners for Daesh links in 2018

  • Iraq declared “victory” over Daesh at the end of 2017 after a three-year war
  • Around 20,000 people suspected of links to Daesh have been arrested since 2014

BAGHDAD: Iraq sentenced more than 600 foreigners including many women and dozens of minors in 2018 for belonging to the Daesh group, the judiciary said on Monday.
Iraq declared “victory” over Daesh at the end of 2017 after a three-year war against the militant, who once controlled nearly a third of the country as well as swathes of neighboring Syria.
Around 20,000 people suspected of links to Daesh have been arrested since 2014.
Judicial spokesman Abdel Sattar Bayraqdar said Monday that “616 men and women accused of belonging to Daesh have been put on trial” in 2018 and sentenced under Iraq’s anti-terrorism law.
They comprised 466 women, 42 men and 108 minors, he said.
Bayraqdar did not, however specify the punishments.
Under Iraq’s anti-terrorism law courts can issue verdicts, including death sentences, against anyone found guilty of belonging to the militant group, including non-combatants.
In April, judicial sources said that more than 300 suspects linked to Daesh had received death sentences and more than 300 others were sentenced to life, which in Iraq is equivalent to 20 years.
Most of the women sentenced for Daesh links were from Turkey and republics of the former Soviet Union.
Three French citizens — two women and a man — have been sentenced to life imprisonment while a German woman, a Belgian man and a Russian man have been sentenced to death.
Many women had traveled to Iraq with their children to join their husbands who fought in the ranks of Daesh.
Some are still waiting to be repatriated to their home countries.
On Sunday, 30 Russian children whose mothers are in prison in Iraq for links to Daesh were flown from Baghdad to Moscow as part of a repatriation program championed by Chechen strongman Ramzan Kadyrov.


Homemade bomb kills Israeli teen, wounds two others in West Bank

Updated 14 min 17 sec ago

Homemade bomb kills Israeli teen, wounds two others in West Bank

  • Israeli security forces deployed throughout the area where the attack took place near the settlement of Dolev, northwest of Ramallah, to search for suspects
  • Palestinians sporadically clash with Israeli settlers and security forces in the West Bank, occupied by Israel since the Six-Day War of 1967, but bomb blasts have been rare in recent years

JERUSALEM: A rare homemade bomb attack in the occupied West Bank killed an Israeli teen and seriously wounded her father and brother Friday as they visited a spring near a Jewish settlement, officials said.
Israeli security forces deployed throughout the area where the attack took place near the settlement of Dolev, northwest of Ramallah, to search for suspects.
Israeli medics had earlier reported that a 17-year-old had been critically wounded in the attack and officials later announced her death, naming her as Rina Shnerb from the central Israeli city of Lod.
Medics from the Magen David Adom rescue service initially gave the ages of the two wounded as 46 and 20, before amending to 21 in the latter case.
The army said the three victims were a father and his two children.
The two wounded were taken by helicopter to hospital, the army said.
“Three civilians who were in a nearby spring were injured in an IED (improvised explosive device) blast,” it said in a statement.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called it a “harsh terrorist attack” and sent condolences to the family, while pledging to continue building settlements.
“The security arms are in pursuit after the abhorrent terrorists,” he said in a statement.
“We will apprehend them. The long arm of Israel reaches all those who seek our lives and will settle accounts with them.”
United Nations envoy Nickolay Mladenov condemned the “shocking, heinous” attack, saying there was nothing heroic in Shnerb’s “murder,” calling it a “despicable, cowardly act.”
“Terror must be unequivocally condemned by ALL,” Mladenov wrote on Twitter.
Israeli forces meanwhile entered the Palestinian village of Beitunia, south of the spring, to take footage from surveillance cameras.
An AFP reporter said Palestinians clashed there with Israeli soldiers, but no casualties were reported.
Chief of the army, Lt. Gen. Aviv Kohavi visited the site of the attack to understand the incident and oversee the efforts to locate the perpetrators, which he was “confident” would happen quickly, the military said.
Later in the day, Shnerb was buried in her hometown Lod, with thousands participating in the funeral.
Shnerb’s father Eitan, who was wounded and couldn’t attend the funeral, relayed through an uncle his request that people focus on “our strength and love and the wonderful nation and our good land” and avoid sinking into “weakness and anger and strife.”
“We should be worthy of the great sacrifice we offered today,” Eitan Shnerb was cited by the uncle as saying.
In a speech on Friday, Ismail Haniya, the leader of the Islamist Hamas movement which rules Gaza, praised the attack but did not claim responsibility for it.
He referred to a recent clash between Israeli police and Palestinian worshippers at the highly sensitive Al-Aqsa mosque compound in Israeli-annexed east Jerusalem and sought to draw a link between the two incidents.
AFP reporters said thousands of Gazans participated in weekly Friday protests at the Israeli border fence, with some youths using slingshots to launch stones at the barrier and a few approaching it.
The health ministry in the enclave said over 122 Palestinians were wounded in clashes with Israeli forces, dozens of them hit by live fire.
Palestinians sporadically clash with Israeli settlers and security forces in the West Bank, occupied by Israel since the Six-Day War of 1967, but bomb blasts have been rare in recent years.
Palestinian attacks have mostly involved guns, knives and car ramming.
There have been concerns about a possible increase in violence in the run up to Israel’s September 17 general election.
A week ago, a Palestinian carried out a car-ramming attack in the West Bank, wounding two Israelis before being shot dead.
On August 8, an off-duty Israeli soldier’s body was found with multiple stab wounds. Two Palestinian suspects were later arrested.
Late Thursday, a Palestinian threw grenades at Israeli soldiers while attempting to cross the Gaza border and was shot by Israeli forces, leaving him wounded, the army and the Gaza health ministry said.
Gaza militants have also launched six missiles at Israel in the past week; the most recent were on Wednesday.
In retaliation, the Israeli army said it struck “a number of military targets in a Hamas naval facility in the northern Gaza Strip.”