Iraqi forces find 3 bodies of kidnapped tribal leaders in central Iraq

Source: Xinhua| 2018-08-02 06:15:54|Editor: yan
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BAGHDAD, Aug. 1 (Xinhua) -- Iraqi security forces Wednesday found the bodies of three leaders of a Shiite tribe who were kidnapped earlier in the day in Iraq's central province of Salahudin, a provincial security source said.

The three leaders of Khazraj tribe were kidnapped by gunmen wearing security uniform, who set up a fake checkpoint on the main road near the town of Dujail, some 60 km north of the Iraqi capital Baghdad, Major Salah Mahdi from Salahudin Operations Command told Xinhua.

Afterwards, the security forces launched a search campaign looking for the kidnapped people and found their bodies riddled with bullets and dumped at an orchard near Dujail, the source said.

Tension ran high in the area where dozens of armed tribesmen from Khazraj tribe attacked the headquarters of the Shiite militia of Asa'ib Ahl al-Haq, which they believe that it was responsible for the killing of three tribal leaders, the source added.

The clashes between the two sides left a tribesman killed and another injured, while there were no reports about casualties among the militiamen, he said.

Asa'ib Ahl al-Haq, or League of People of Righteousness, is part of Hashd Shaabi brigades. The group is allegedly funded, trained and armed by Iran's Quds Force during the U.S. occupation of Iraq and later became allied to the Shiite-led government in Baghdad.

Local police in Dujail imposed curfew in the area, while reinforcement troops from the army and police arrived to the scene from Baghdad and the provincial capital Tikrit, some 170 km north of Baghdad, to secure the area, he added.