Baghdad (IraqiNews.com) More than 700 Russian and Azerbaijani female members of the Islamic State have been arrested since Iraqi forces recaptured the city of Mosul early July, an Iraqi parliament member has said.
Fayan Dakhil wrote on twitter that Iraqi security, since the liberation of Mosul from Islamic State militants, had arrested 512 Russian female IS members in addition to 200 Azerbaijanis.
A spokesperson of Azerbaijan’s foreign ministry said in a statement, quoted by the national news agency, that his country maintains contacts with the Iraqi side to verify the reports.
Iraqi forces had previously said they were holding nearly 1,400 family members of Islamic State fighters who had turned themselves in with Kurdish Peshmerga forces.
In September, Madat Guliyev, head of the Azerbaijani State Security service (intelligence) told reporters they had received information that 300 Azerbaijani nationals had been killed fighting for Islamic State in Iraq. He said agency workers were sent to Iraq to verify the reports.
He said those had been “taken in by the propaganda and joined Daesh (IS)”, adding that their families and children accompanied them. “There are information of deaths, even among those children,” the official was quoted saying by Russian agency Interfax.
According to Guliyev, intelligence services in Azerbaijan had detained 85 people over charges of joining the extremist group. He put the total of Azerbaijani citizens who had joined the group since the start of the war at 900.
Citizenship has been stripped from 195 suspects, according to Guliyev.