The Iraqi Ministry of Interior announced on Friday (September 3rd) the arrest of seven suspected leaders of al-Qaeda and the so-called Islamic State of Iraq and the death of one suspect during two separate security operations in Baghdad and Ninawa.
Iraqi security officials said one of the detainees is the "minister of war" of the al-Qaeda front group Islamic State of Iraq.
Maj. Gen. Nuaman Dakhil, commander of rapid reaction forces in the Ministry of Interior, said rapid reaction forces carried out a raid and search operation Thursday (September 2nd) in Baghdad's Abu Ghraib district. The raid was carried out based on information provided by citizens in the area.
According to Dakhil, the "minister of war" Khedhr Ali Dhiab is the group's second-in-command. He succeeded the former "minister of war" who was arrested by Iraqi security forces in Baghdad last June.
Elsewhere, the Ninawa Operations Command announced the arrest of six suspects of different Arab nationalities and the death of another suspect. All were described as leaders of al-Qaeda.
The suspects were arrested in a preemptive security operation carried out by a task force of commandos from the 3rd Division of the Iraqi Army on Thursday in al-Baaj district, west of Mosul. Officials learned that Arab gunmen were in the area planning suicide attacks using car bombs.