Iraq confiscates thousands properties of Islamic State members’ families

Members of the Islamic State group. File photo.

Baghdad ( Iraq has seized thousands of homes belonging to families which had their members joining the Islamic State, a newspaper reported on Tuesday.

London-based the New Arab said the local governments in seven Iraqi provinces confiscated nearly 18000 properties of families of Islamic State militants, saying that the measure won approval from the federal government.

An official in Baghdad told the paper that the measure targeted  properties owned by the parents, siblings, spouses and children of those accused of operating under the extremist group. It, however, went further to include those belonging to the suspect’s cousins, the official said.

The seized properties included, houses, flats, farmlands and shops.

The official, however, suggested that the measures are at odds with the Iraqi constitution, which spared families the responsibility for the actions of adolescent sons.

He revealed that those confiscated units were given to army and police members dwelling in temporary lodging, as well as to families of security personnel killed during the war against IS, while others were turned into government and political parties offices.

Iraq declared victory over Islamic State militants in December, ending a three-year war against the group which proclaimed a self-styled “Islamic caliphate”. The government has sentenced dozens to death for involvement with the group and declared plans to deport others of foreign nationalities. But some human rights observers have voiced fears that government bodies were taking retaliatory measures against militants’ families, urging Iraq not to punish those for the wrongdoing of their sons.

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