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HomeWorld NewsIraq court condemns to death widow of IS leader al-Baghdadi

Iraq court condemns to death widow of IS leader al-Baghdadi

This file image released by the Department of Defence on October 30, 2019, and displayed at a Pentagon briefing, shows an image of Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. An Iraqi court issued a death sentence against one of the wives of the late brutal Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, alleging that she was complicit in crimes committed against Yazidi women captured by the militant group. File
| Photo Credit: AP

An Iraqi court has sentenced to death a wife of slain Islamic State group leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi on charges of detaining Yazidi women, the judiciary said on July 10.

The wife of the polygamous Baghdadi was brought back to Iraq after being detained in Turkiye, judicial sources said under cover of anonymity because they were not authorised to speak to the press.

“The Karkh (west Baghdad) criminal court sentenced to death the wife of the terrorist Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi for the crime of working with the Daesh terrorist group and detaining Yazidi women in her house,” the Supreme Judicial Council said on its website, using an Arabic acronym for IS.

The slain leader’s wife detained the Yazidis who “were later kidnapped” by IS fighters in the Sinjar district of northern Iraq, it added.

A judicial source identified her as Asma Mohammed.

Also Read | ISIS still dangerous, could attempt retribution attack after Baghdadi’s killing: U.S.

Washington announced in October 2019 that U.S. troops had killed Baghdadi in an operation in northwestern Syria, five years after he proclaimed a “caliphate” across swathes of Syria and neighbouring Iraq.

During their lightning advance through northern Iraq in 2014, the Islamist extremists of IS singled out the non-Muslim Yazidis, systematically killing thousands of men and forcing women into sexual slavery.

Over several years, Iraqi courts have handed down hundreds of death sentences as well as life prison terms under the penal code for membership in “a terrorist group”.

Among those convicted in Iraq were more than 500 foreign men and women found guilty of joining IS.

Iraq announced in February it had secured “the repatriation of the family” of Baghdadi, with a judicial source telling AFP that Baghdadi’s wife, “detained in Turkiye”, had been returned along with her children.

OPINION | Death of a terrorist: On Baghdadi’s killing

The announcement coincided with a broadcast of an interview with “Baghdadi’s wife” by Saudi-owned pan-Arab TV channel Al Arabiya. It named her as Asma Mohammed.

In November 2019, Turkiye said it had arrested a wife of Baghdadi, whom Turkish media identified as Asma Fawzi Mohammed Al-Qubaysi, in June 2018.

U.S.-backed forces defeated IS in Iraq in 2017, and in Syria two years later. But remnants of the group continue to attack civilians and security personnel in both countries.

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