Death penalty for murder; endangering national security; distributing drugs; rape; attacks on transport convoys; financing and execution of terrorism.] Suspended in June 2003 after 2003 invasion; reinstated August 2004

Iraq executes 38 members of ISIS and Al-Qaeda

December 15, 2017

Iraq has hanged 38 Sunni Muslim jihadists after they were convicted on terrorism charges. The justice ministry said that all the accused were either members of the ISIS or Al-Qaeda.

Second largest mass execution

The militants were hanged in a prison in the southern Iraqi city, the Justice Minister was quoted as saying by Reuters.

“The prison administration executed on Thursday in the presence of Justice Minister Haidar al-Zameli, in Nasiriyah prison, 38 death row prisoners belonging to Al-Qaeda or Daesh (IS) accused of terrorist activities,” said Dakhel Kazem, a senior official in the provincial council, was quoted as saying by AFP.

A source also informed the news agency that 37 of the executed militants were Iraqi nationals and one was from Sweden.

Earlier executions

It was the second largest mass execution since September 25 when 42 militants convicted on terrorism charges ranging from killing members of security forces to detonating car bombs were hanged.

Earlier in August, Iraq had also sentenced 27 terror suspects to death for participating in the Camp Speicher massacre in 2014 that killed at least 1,700 Iraqi Air Force cadets in the ISIS-controlled territory.

Mass hanging condemned

However, the recent execution has not gone down well with the Amnesty International and they have yet again condemned the practice of capital sentence.

“The victims of IS deserve justice, not mass executions carried out after deeply flawed and hasty trials,” Lynn Maalouf, Amnesty’s Middle East director, was quoted as saying by BBC.

The Iraqi Army, backed by US Forces, has wiped out ISIS from Mosul. The Iraqi government had also declared their victory in July over ISIS militants’ stronghold in western Mosul.

ISIS flag
ISIS wiped from their stronghold in Mosul. [Representational image]Reuters File Photo

In yet another major victory, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi on Saturday declared victory against ISIS following a vigorous fight against the extremist outfit.


Islamic State has killed at least 30 people for “being gay”, UN told

US ambassador tells security council meeting it is “about time” the issue of violence and discrimination towards LGBT people is highlighted
Islamic State has claimed responsibility for killing at least 30 people for sodomy, the head of an international gay rights organisation has told the 1st UN security council meeting in New York to focus on violence and discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.
“It’s about time, 70 years after the creation of the UN, that the fate of LGBT persons who fear for their lives around the world is taking centre stage,” said the US ambassador, Samantha Power, who organised the meeting with Chile’s UN envoy. “This represents a small but historic step.”
Diplomats said 2 of the 15 council members, Chad and Angola, had not attended the informal closed meeting.
Jessica Stern, the executive director of the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission, told the council that courts established by Isis in Iraq and Syria claimed to have punished sodomy with stoning, firing squads and beheadings and by pushing men from tall buildings.
Fear of the extremist group, which controls about a third of Syria and Iraq, was fuelling violence by others against LGBT individuals, she said.
Subhi Nahas, a gay refugee from the Syrian city of Idlib, told the council that President Bashar al-Assad’s government “launched a campaign accusing all dissidents of being homosexuals” when the country’s uprising started in 2011. Soon afterwards gay hangouts were raided and many people were arrested and tortured. “Some were never heard from again,” he said.
When the al-Qaida-linked al-Nusra Front took Idlib in 2012, he said, its militants announced “they would cleanse the town of those involved in sodomy”. Arrests and killings of accused homosexual people followed. In 2014 when Isis took the city, the violence worsened, he said.
“At the executions hundreds of townspeople, including children, cheered jubilantly as at a wedding,” Nahas said. “If a victim did not die after being hurled off a building, the townspeople stoned him to death. This was to be my fate, too.”
He was able to escape to Lebanon, then to Turkey, where he was threatened by a former schoolfriend from Idlib who had joined Isis. Finally he reached the US.
Stern stressed that persecution of LGBT people in Iraq and Syria began long before the emergence of Isis, and called for UN action to relocate LGBT persons most in need and to bring the gay community into broader human rights and humanitarian initiatives.
Source: The Guardian, August 25, 2015


New killings: ISIS answers the UN Security Council

Iraqi News wrote yesterday that one of its sources, in the occupied northern province of Ninawah (Nineveh), told them:

“[G]unmen belonging to ISIS threw on Sunday nine civilians from the top of a high building in the city of Mosul after being accused of homosexuality.”

The source, who asked anonymity, added: “ISIS militants rounded up a number of citizens in the city to see the implementation of the judgment of the so-called Shariah judge.”

I can’t call this report “confirmed,” though “confirming” Da’ish horrors mainly means finding the self-advertisements on social media. However, Tweets like these, showing at least one person’s execution, started spreading from Da’ish-affiliated accounts on Saturday night:

Those photos were originally posted on August 22 on Justpaste, a site the Islamic State uses for atrocity advertising. The page says it belongs to Da’ish’s “Information office for the Province of Ninawah.” Here they are, full-size

My guess is that either Iraqi News got the date wrong and the executions happened Saturday, or there were running executions (perhaps of more than nine people all told) from Saturday through Sunday.

If it’s true, nine people are a lot to kill. I believe it’s the the largest number that Da’ish has murdered at one time for “sodomy.” I don’t wish to read too much into furtive words, butIraqi News‘ source seems to suggest the men were rounded up quickly upon some urgent mandate.  It’s hard not to suspect this wave of killing was a pre-emptive answer to Monday’s UN Security Council meeting on gays and ISIS — which was making headlines in both Western and Arab media fully nine days earlier.

My fear (I wrote two days ago) was that “the Security Council will only give more impetus to murder”: that ISIS, provoked by the ill-considered publicity around this move, would slaughter more people. I hope I’ll be disproven; I’d dearly love not to be right. But I’m afraid I am.

In any case, these killings show (as I suspect Da’ish meant them to show) that the Security Council can’t do anything to save lives. Which again raises the question: why bring this to the Security Council? Why take the risk, if there’s no benefit for those in danger? Before the meeting, the US promised it would “examine what kinds of protections are needed for LGBT individuals, what the international community needs to do to stop the scourge of prejudice and violence, and – related to this – how to advance equality and dignity, even in conflict zones”: as well as “the multiple political, military, and social lines of effort needed to degrade and destroy” ISIS. So far as I can see, none of this came up. “Change begins by working to stop attacks against individuals based on their sexual orientation and gender identity,” US ambassador Samantha Power told the meeting, without any hints for how to jumpstart this in Mosul. Most states made the usual vague promises, bland and undemanding. People are still dying.

It’s dangerous to pretend we know what to do when we don’t.

The most substantive proposals to come out of Monday’s meeting were by Jessica Stern, the head of the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC). Jessica is an old colleague, of course, and she was at her analytical best here, but notice something about her five points:

  1. All UN agencies in Iraq and Syria must have tailored LGBTI programming.
  2. UNHCR and governments must continue to act with urgency for those most in need of relocation.
  3. The Government of Iraq should remove barriers to access to direct services and justice.
  4. The Government of Iraq must respect freedom of expression and allow independent radio stations to operate.
  5. Donors must fund initiatives by LGBTI Iraqis and Syrians and by their allies. Resources should support immediate needs, like safe houses and psychosocial support, and long-term rights-based initiatives and norm building.

These are important proposals, but not one is about people living under the control of the Islamic State. They’re addressed to the UN and the Iraqi government, which don’t and can’t operate in ISIS-controlled territory. These proposals (especially the recommendation to the High Commission on Refugees to resettle victims, something that needs to be said over and over and over) will help people who escape — but not those trying to survive in the territory Da’ish rules.

So we’re left with excellent ideas for the rest of Iraq, but no solution for the ISIS killings. Nobody has a strategy for ISIS, though some governments serve up feel-good stories that give the illusion progress is being made. And promising “security” when you can’t provide it — provoking Da’ish with publicity when we have no way to deal with the consequences — may be an inadvertent invitation to murder.

Da'ish fighter in Mosul after the group seized control of the Iraqi city in 2014. Photo by Reuters

Iraq: Huge crowd gathers to watch ISIS throw gay man off building

New photographs have emerged showing Islamic State militants throwing yet another man off a building accused of being gay.
In the images, which have not been verified, hundreds of other militants carrying weapons gathered on the main street in the Iraqi town of Mosul to watch the execution.
In one photo, several children can be seen at the front of the crowd in khaki robes.
In another, four jihadis in white robes and black tactical vests stand in a line behind the accused who is blindfolded and keeling on the ground, while a judge reads out a statement condemning the man to his death over a microphone system.
It is unclear how the man was discovered to be gay.
The terrorist group did not release images of the moment they threw him off the building, as they have done previously. Instead, the last image shows his dead body crumpled on the ground.
And to ‘celebrate’ the legalization of gay marriage nationwide in the US last month, ISIS posted photos of militants throwing four gay men off a building in Raqqa, Syria with the hashtag #LoveWins.
ISIS have killed dozens of gay men, whom they have branded the ‘worst of creatures,’ since the beginning of the year.
Source: Gay Star New

New video shows ISIS militants throwing gay men off building

Yet another video has been released by ISIS showing the brutal execution of two men accused of being gay.

The latest video from ISIS, shot in Palmyra, shows two Syrian men be thrown off a building before being stoned to death.
According to local journalist Zaid Benjamin, the men were accused of “having a homosexual affair”.
Images shared on social media showed the two men being led to the top of the three-storey building as their judgement was read out by an ISIS member.
As with other videos released by the terrorist group, a large crowd of local residents gathered around to see the incident.
The terrorist group, which operates predominantly across Syria and Iraq, is notorious for filming videos in which captives – usually Westerners or opposing fighters – are brutally slaughtered.
It has also taken to executing men it claims are gay, by throwing them off of tall buildings and pelting them with rocks in IS-produced videos.
Members of the terrorist group, which has published a number of graphic videos featuring the murder of supposed gay men, holds power across parts of Iraq, Syria and Libya.
ISIS militants recently threatened to throw homosexuals off the Leaning Tower of “Pizza”.
Members of ISIS took to Twitter to warn that they were coming to “Rome” to “use your leaning tower of pizza to throw off homosexuals”.
The Leaning Tower of Pisa – which is not spelled Pizza – is actually located in the town of Pisa, nearly 200 miles from Rome.

Source: Pink News, Joseph Patrick McCormick, July 24, 2015

Islamic State throws four gay men off building in Iraq

This is the eighth gay murder by Islamic extremists this week
Photos of four gay men killed by Islamic extremists have been exposed to the public.
The four victims were taken to the top of a high building barefoot, blindfolded, hands tied and terrified in the ISIS stronghold of Fallujah, Iraq.
Held by their ankles, they were dropped head-first.
While many murders conducted by ISIS are in front of a huge crowd, intended to force the public into being controlled by fear and coercion, this time they are absent.


Posted online by Islamic State media, this is the eighth known murder of a gay man by ISIS in the past seven days.
To ‘celebrate’ the US passing marriage equality, terrorists threw four gay men off a building in Raqqa, Syria on Friday (26 June)
Mocking the message of victory, they posted: ‘Executed 4 GAY people by throwing him from High building in front of the people #LoveWins #IS.’