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Iraqi court sentences eight foreign women to life imprisonment over Daesh links

This file picture shows a view of the Central Criminal Court of Iraq in the capital Baghdad.

A court in Iraq has handed down life terms to eight foreign women over membership in the Daesh Takfiri terrorist group and involvement in acts of terror across the war-ravaged Arab country.

Abdul Sattar al-Biraqdar, spokesman for Iraq's Supreme Judicial Council, said in a statement that the country’s Central Criminal Court issued the verdicts against three Turkish women, three Azerbaijanis, one Uzbek national and a Syrian citizen on Thursday.

Biraqdar pointed out that the rulings were issued in accordance with Article 2 of Iraq’s Anti-Terrorism Law.

On April 29, the Central Criminal Court of Iraq, which is the country's flagship criminal justice institution, found 19 female Russian citizens guilty of “joining and supporting Daesh.”

The court passed life sentences on the women as they were accompanied by small children during the hearing. 

This picture taken on April 29, 2018 in the Central Criminal Court of Iraq shows Russian women, who have been sentenced to life in prison on grounds of joining the Daesh Takfiri terrorist group, speaking to Russian diplomats as they wait with children in a hallway. (Photo by AFP)

On April 17, the Supreme Judicial Council of Iraq announced in a statement that the Central Criminal Court had sentenced three Azerbaijani women and a female Kyrgyz citizen to death over affiliation to Daesh.

The court also handed life sentences to two Russian nationals and one woman from France.

On April 2, the Central Criminal Court also sentenced six Turkish women to death and handed down a life term to another.

The women, all accompanied by small children, told the court they had entered Iraq to join their husbands, who were fighting within the ranks of the terror outfit. 

In January, Iraqi judicial officials sentenced a German citizen of Moroccan origin to death by hanging in accordance with Anti-Terrorism Law.

Biraqdar said the woman, whose identity was not disclosed, confessed during investigations that she had traveled from Germany to Syria and then to Iraq, because she had a strong belief in Daesh.

The German citizen was accompanied with her two daughters, who later married members of Daesh.

Iraq has detained at least 560 women, as well as 600 children, identified as Takfiris or relatives of Daesh terrorists.

Experts estimate that a total of 20,000 people are being held in jail in Iraq for alleged membership of Daesh. The Baghdad government has not released an official figure as yet.

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