Nineveh (IraqiNews.com) Iraq’s paramilitary force, Al-Hashd al-Shaabi, announced on Saturday that they had discovered a mass grave containing the remains of 500 prisoners executed by Islamic State in Badush prison near Mosul.
Al-Hashd al-Shaabi website revealed in a statement that its forces had found “a large mass grave containing the remains of around 500 civilian prisoners in (Badush) prison who were executed by (Islamic State) gangs after they controlled the prison during their occupation of Mosul.”
Al-Hashd al-Shaabi forces did not disclose how they arrived at their figures, which could not be independently confirmed, although it is consistent with a Human Rights Watch report of Islamic State killings at Badush prison.
According to HRW, in June 2014 the Islamic State group attacked Badush prison and killed more than 670 Shia prisoners after separating out Sunni prisoners. Islamic State also reportedly held hundreds of kidnapped women from Iraq’s Yazidi minority at the prison.
The Islamic State militants shot Shia prisoners, using rifles and machine guns, according to survivors, as well as killing a number of Kurdish and Yazidi prisoners.
The Islamic State overran large areas north and west of Baghdad in 2014, but Iraqi forces backed by US-led air strikes have since regained most of the territory they lost.
Iraqi forces launched an operation to retake Mosul – the last Islamic State – held city in Iraq – in October of 2016, recapturing its eastern side before setting their sights on its smaller but more densely populated west.