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ISIS executes its top Mosul official: Kurdish sources - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive
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An image grab taken from a video uploaded on YouTube on June 12, 2014, allegedly shows Islamic State of Iraq and Syria militants taking part in a military parade in Mosul, Iraq. (AFP Photo)

An image grab taken from a video uploaded on YouTube on June 12, 2014, allegedly shows Islamic State of Iraq and Syria militants taking part in a military parade in Mosul, Iraq. (AFP Photo)

Erbil, Asharq Al-Awsat—The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) has executed several of its own militants, including the group’s top official in Mosul, on charges of espionage, Kurdish sources told Asharq Al-Awsat on Tuesday.

Speaking exclusively to Asharq Al-Awsat, Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) spokesman Saeed Mamozeini said ISIS’s former Wali in Mosul, Muammar Tawhlah, “was executed by the firing squad on Tuesday morning after he was sacked and imprisoned.” Wali is an Arabic word for governor used during the Ottoman era.

The execution took place “at the Ghazlani camp, in southern Mosul, and was attended by the Caliph of ISIS Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi,” Ghayath Sawraji of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) told Asharq Al-Awsat.

“After the death of ISIS’s [former] Wali in Mosul, Radwan Taleb Al-Hamdouni, in bombing from international coalition jets, the organization appointed Tawhlah as an acting Wali in Mosul before he was arrested on charges of espionage,” Sawraji added.

Tawhlah reportedly comes from a prominent family with a long history in the city, and which is also well known for its support of extremist groups in the wider province of Nineveh.

The Islamist group executed another nine militants belonging to the organization on Tuesday, according to local activists.

“The other nine militants were executed on charges of fleeing the battle and laying down arms,” an activist who spoke on the condition of anonymity told Asharq Al-Awsat. “They are Iraqis from Al-Ba’aj district,” he added.

ISIS seized control of Mosul, Iraq’s second-largest city, six months ago this week, after the Iraqi army units stationed in northern Iraq collapsed in the face of the jihadist group’s lightning advance across the region.

Over the past few weeks, ISIS is reported to have carried out a campaign of mass executions against scores of its militants whom it accused of either abandoning the battlefield or spying for the Iraqi government, Iran, or the US-led international coalition that has been conducting airstrikes against it.

“Around 211 [ISIS] militants have been executed in Mosul, the majority of whom are Iraqi, with a few Arab nationals,” Mamozeini said.

“According to our information, the group’s Minister of War has requested permission from Baghdadi . . . to withdraw from the outskirts of Mosul after suffering heavy losses in the fighting with the Peshmerga forces,” the source said.

As part of a systematic campaign against symbols of the Iraqi state in the city, ISIS demolished a government headquarters in Mosul on Tuesday.

As well as pulling back from the city’s outskirts, the Islamist group has also launched a major recruitment campaign inside Mosul to make up for the severe shortage in fighters, according to activists.