Security services have deployed additional personnel in the vicinity of government and security institutions in Diyala, after the Higher Judicial Council issued a death verdict against the deputy governor and four of his aides yesterday [Nov. 29], after they were convicted of armed attacks.
Official sources from the Bureau of Counterterrorism told Al-Hayat that the security deployment is designed to prevent any retaliatory attacks, after a death verdict was issued against the second deputy governor and former governor of Diyala, Mohammed Jassim al-Jubouri, and four of his aids after they were convicted of armed attacks in the town of Barwanah in the al-Muqdadiya district in 2007, which killed and wounded dozens.
Spokesman of the Higher Judicial Council Abdul-Sattar Bayraqdar had announced that “the Central Criminal Court, headed by judge Baligh Hamdi, issued a death sentence against former deputy governor of the province of Diyala, Mohammed Hussein Jassim al-Jubouri, and four others for conducting armed attacks for sectarian motives in Diyala.” The court, which is trying Vice President Tariq al-Hashemi, also issued death verdicts against four of Jubouri’s bodyguards.
The same court sentenced to death on Nov. 8 eight members of Hashemi’s protection team, after being convicted of car bombings in Nahiyat al-Madaein (25 km [about 15 miles] south of Baghdad). It also issued on Nov. 4 a fourth death verdict in absentia against Hashemi for attempting to blow up a car bomb against Shiite visitors south of Baghdad last year.
After he was charged in December 2011 with running death squads and an arrest warrant was issued against him, Hashemi fled to the Kurdistan Region in northern Iraq and traveled to Qatar and Saudi Arabia before he moved to Turkey.
Moreover, spokesman of the Tigris Operations Command Lt. Col. Ghalib Atiya al-Karaji denied to Al-Hayat that suspects were arrested without judicial warrants and explained that “some statements made by political leaders are unfounded and are intended to tarnish the reputation of security services in the province.”
He emphasized that “the relevant apparatuses are coordinating with the security committee in the provincial council and any arrest without judicial authorization has not been made.”
Political blocs accused security forces of arresting leaders of Sunni parties for allegedly committing terrorist crimes in the province, as the provincial council elections drew near.
Security forces with an arrest warrant arrested Jubouri, a leader of the Unified Reform Bloc, a coalition that consists of the Iraqi Islamic Party in 2009, after he assumed the post of second deputy governor.
Shiite parties accused the Iranian opposition group the Mujahadeen-e-Khalq of supporting Jubouri in conducting armed attacks. The latter previously told Al-Hayat that these accusations are a political act and demanded that they “provide evidence proving that he is cooperating with the organization and behind the attacks in the al-Muqdadiya district in 2007.”
In addition, families of female detainees demanded the prosecution of those involved in torturing and raping them. The mother of a detainee named Karima Khalil Asaad confirmed to Al-Hayat that “the government is required to conduct an investigation under international supervision to determine the extent of violations in prison.”
She added that “families of the detainees, who were transferred to Baghdad to serve their jail time, will hold a sit-in in the province of Diyala, protesting the violations and sexual abuse by the prison officials, while detainees are serving their time.”
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