Diyala, IRAQ – Iraqi troops arrested a top ISIS leader/mastermind who is behind several Islamic State-linked terrorist attacks against security forces in Diyala province, the head of Iraq’s security committee was quoted as saying.
Speaking to SNG news agency, Sadeq al-Husseini, the head of the security committee of Diyala provincial council, said, “Troops of the interior ministry’s anti-terrorism and intelligence departments managed to arrest a senior ISIS leader in al-Nada area, 45 km east of Baqubah, the capital city of Diyala.”
Iraqi News reports that the arrestee is believed to be the mastermind of several ISIS-linked terrorist attacks against security bodies in the province, al-Husseini said.
The troops found an explosive belt, bombs, weapons and documents on future terrorist plans in his possession, he added.
The Islamic State group appeared on the international scene in 2014 when it seized large swathes of territory in Iraq and Syria, declaring the establishment of an Islamic “caliphate” from Mosul city.
Later on, the group has become notorious for its brutality, including mass killings, abductions and beheadings, prompting the U.S. to lead an international coalition to destroy it.
Iraq declared victory over Islamic State militants in December, ending three years of operations to retake territories occupied by the militants to declare a self-styled “caliphate”.
Anbar’s town of Rarwa, close to borders with Syria, was the last ISIS bastion recaptured by the Iraqi forces. The government had said its forces regained full control over the borders with Syria, but militants have staged occasional attacks from there, prompting the government to carry out military raids on the group’s locations inside Syria.
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