Iraqi security forces have given al-Qaeda members in Diyala province 72 hours to surrender before launching a military operation to arrest them, the Defence Ministry said Wednesday (June 5th).
The army, with help from the Iraqi air force, police and intelligence forces, would carry out the operation, said Lt. Gen. Abdul Ameer al-Zaidi, commander of army operations in Diyala province.
"The army gave a 72-hour deadline to al-Qaeda elements to surrender, along with their weapons, to the Iraqi forces before launching a large-scale operation" targeting the groups' hideouts in Diyala, al-Zaidi said.
The operation has been planned based on accurate security and intelligence information about the whereabouts of al-Qaeda leaders, particularly in Hamarain Basin areas, he said.
Al-Qaeda elements who chose to surrender will be treated in accordance with the law and human rights standards, he said, and their action will be taken into consideration when they are referred to the judiciary.