(AhlulBayt News Agency) - Iraq has executed 38 members of the ISIS and al-Qaeda Takfiri terror groups over terrorism charges in a prison in the southern province of Dhi Qar, provincial authorities say.
According to Dakhel Kazem, a senior official in the provincial council, the executions were carried out in a detention center in provincial capital of Nasiriyah on Thursday.
He further said that the convicts, who had been “accused of terrorist activities,” were hanged “in the presence of Justice Minister Haidar al-Zameli.” Kazem added that they were all Iraqi nationals but one also had Swedish citizenship.
It was the largest number of executions in the crisis-hit Arab country on a single day since September 25 when 42 terrorists were put to death in the same prison.
The executions were carried out five days after Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi declared declared the end of military operations against ISIS after a three-year hard campaign by government troops and the Popular Mobilization Units (PMU), also known as Hashd al-Sha’abi, to retake territories seized by terrorists, which once held roughly one third of the country's soil.
“Our forces are in complete control of the Iraqi-Syrian border and I therefore announce the end of the war against ISIS,” Abadi told a conference in Baghdad on December 9.
ISIS commenced its reign of terror and destruction in Syria and Iraq in 2013 and 2014 respectively. In June 2014, the group declared its so-called “caliphate” in both Arab countries after it seized the Iraqi city of Mosul and pronounced it as the group’s de facto capital in the Middle Eastern country. ISIS also made the city of Raqqah as its main stronghold in Syria.
However, ISIS gradually lost the areas it had held, thanks to the efforts made by government and pro-government forces in both countries. In Syria, ISIS now holds just a few decreasing pockets of land.