Iraqi Forces Unearth Mass Grave of Inmates Killed by Daesh
TEHRAN (Tasnim) – The remains of hundreds of mainly Shiite inmates killed by Daesh (ISIL) terrorists when they overran a prison in northern Iraq more than two years ago have been unearthed by forces retaking the area from the group, a spokesman said.
Iraq’s popular forces made the discovery after driving the terrorists from the Badush area where the prison is located, as part of a wider campaign to dislodge Daesh from the city of Mosul.
As an array of forces dismantle Daesh's self-proclaimed caliphate across Iraq and Syria, more evidence is emerging of the war crimes committed by the terrorists.
"Initial checks of part of the mass grave revealed remains with prison uniforms and lined up in a way that indicates they were shot dead in groups," said Karim Nouri, spokesman for the Hashid Shaabi, forceswho have joined with Iraq’s in counter-terrorism operations against terrorists across the country.
One of those groups -- the Abbas Division -- is fighting alongside the regular Iraqi army, which in recent days jointly completed the encirclement of Mosul, about 10 km (6 miles) southeast of Badush.
The terrorists used the prison to hold their own captives including thousands of members of the Yazidi religious minority, but blew it up some time before Iraqi forces drew near, according to Reuters.
Human Rights Watch said in a report that as many as 600 people were killed in the Badush prison massacre, which took place on the same day that Daesh terrorists captured Mosul in June 2014.
The militants corralled the inmates, who had been serving sentences for a range of crimes -- from murder and assaults to nonviolent offences -- onto trucks and drove them to an isolated stretch of desert about 2 km (1 miles) from the prison, HRW said.
The report was based on the testimony of more than a dozen men who survived by playing dead or because they were shielded by the bodies of other prisoners who fell on top of them.