ISIS abducts two brothers at fake checkpoint in Garmiyan
ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – On Saturday evening, members of the so-called Islamic State abducted two brothers by setting up a fake checkpoint between the districts of Kifri and Tuzkhurmatu.
The two brothers, 34-year-old Hemin Jalal, and 32-year-old Qanee Jalal, along with their family, were stopped at a fake checkpoint as they were returning from the Dawda area to their home in the Kifri district.
Relatives said at least 15 armed men with pickup trucks were at the checkpoint. The armed men reportedly took the two brothers and confiscated their cars, releasing their wives and children on the highway, the family members relayed.
The incident marks the second kidnapping case in 48 hours in the same area.
Members of an Islamic State sleeper cell abducted several civilians on Thursday at a fake security checkpoint they had set up on a road connecting two towns in the Kurdistan Region’s southern Garmiyan area.
Goran Burhan, a family member of the two brothers, said they took a trip to their farmland when they were taken on the road between the Nala-Shkena and Duraji village. “We haven’t heard from them since,” Burhan told Kurdistan 24.
According to the family members, the two brothers are victims of the deadly Anfal genocide campaign during which the previous Iraqi regime killed countless thousands of Kurds and destroyed their villages in the 1980s. Their father and four of their brothers lost their lives during the brutal campaign in 1988.
Kifri, a disputed territory between the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) and Iraq’s central government, lies within the Garmiyan administrative border.
The Garmiyan Administration is an unofficial province in the Kurdistan Region that includes the three districts of Kalar, Kifri, and Chamchamal. Regional Kurdish Peshmerga and Asayish forces are in charge of security in Garmiyan, while national Iraqi forces control the region to its south and west.
Kurdish officials have warned that the security vacuum in these areas created by the lack of coordination between the two forces offers extremist fighters the opportunity to regroup and stage attacks in nearby populated areas.
Editing by Karzan Sulaivany