Mideast briefs: Iraqi hostages rescued by U.S., Iraqi forces
U.S. and Iraqi security forces rescued three Iraqi hostages on Tuesday who had been held in Mosul, U.S. military officials said Wednesday.
The three hostages were reportedly chained to the wall of the basement in a house in the northern Iraqi city; there was no information on the hostages’ identities, whom their captors were or why they were kidnapped.
The rescue team included U.S. soldiers from the 172nd Stryker Brigade and the Iraqi 3rd Battalion, 4th Brigade, 2nd Iraqi Army Division, and members of the Iraqi police.
There were no casualties during the rescue, which followed tips from local Iraqis, officials said.
Iraqi court convicts 22 detainees on chargesOver the last week, the Central Criminal Court of Iraq convicted some 22 detainees of charges ranging from illegal border crossing to coordinating attacks on U.S. and Iraqi troops.
One of the men received the death penalty for “planning, coordinating and conducting deadly attacks and kidnappings in Mosul and Baghdad,” according to a U.S. military release.
Mohammad Khalaf Shakara was accused of making between $50,000 and $100,000 for his deadly enterprise.
In another case, a man named Khalid Ibrahim Sulaiman was detained after soldiers found him “sitting alone in a vehicle with a remote transmission device that was used to detonate” a car bomb. Sulaiman was sentenced to life in prison.
Several other detainees received life sentences, which they will serve in Iraqi prisons.
To date, U.S. officials said, the court has tried 995 detainees for attacks on coalition forces and other crimes. Of those 995, 908 have been convicted at trial.
In many cases, U.S. servicemembers are brought to Baghdad to testify against the defendants.