Police in Iraq on Saturday arrested 12 members of a militant group and front for al Qaeda, the Islamic State of Iraq, believed to be behind a bloody church siege in Baghdad last month which killed 44 worshippers.
AFP - Iraq has arrested 12 militants suspected of helping take Christians hostage in a church siege that killed 44 worshippers and two priests last month, an interior ministry official said Saturday.
"Police have arrested 12 members of the group responsible for the attack against the church," the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity, without specifying when they were detained.
Among those arrested were Huthaifa al-Batawi, the Baghdad chief of the Islamic State of Iraq, the Al-Qaeda front group which carried out the attack.
The militants were detained in raids carried out in the upscale west Baghdad neighbourhood of Mansur and on Palestine street, in the capital's east.
In all, 44 worshippers, two priests and seven security force personnel were killed during the seizure of the Baghdad cathedral and ensuing shootout when it was stormed by troops on October 31.
Around 60 others were wounded in the bloodbath, and the five militants who carried it out were also killed.
Date created : 2010-11-27