Iraqi PM arrives in Saladin to investigate abduction of 12 civilians

Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi chairs a meeting of security and military officials in Saladin, Iraq, October 18, 2020.

SULAIMANI (ESTA) — Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi arrived in Saladin province on Sunday to investigate the abduction of 12 civilians in the province.

On Saturday, Saladin Governor Akar Jabir Khalil said 12 civilians including children were kidnapped by unidentified militants in Farhatiya town in southern Saladin. The security forces later found bodies of eight of them.

“The killing happened in an area between a Hashid al-Shaabi unit and a commando regiment of Iraqi interior ministry,” Khalil said in a statement.

Kadhimi accompanied by ministers of defense and interior, Hashid al-Shaabi chairman, chief of staff of the army and deputy commander of joint operations arrived in Saladin on Sunday morning to hold a meeting with security and military officials in the governorate.

Kadhimi, who is also Commander-in-Chief of Armed Forces, said he visited the province to “confirm that the state is in place to protect the security of citizens and establish pillars of law, especially after the heinous crime that Saladin recently witnessed,” the statement read.

“The state will protect you,” Kadhimi said in remarks to the province’s citizens.

Meanwhile, Iraqi National Security Advisor Qassem al-Araji said a special investigative committee would investigate the “criminal incident” during a meeting with the Saladin governor.

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