Attackers free detainee in Kirkuk

Attackers have raided a hospital in the northern Iraqi city of Kirkuk, killing three policemen and freeing a member of a cell who had planned to assassinate a judge trying Saddam Hussein.

    A Saddam trial judge was the target of the detainee's cell

    "A group of about 20 armed men burst into the establishment around 6am (0300 GMT)," said Captain Salam Abd al-Qadir, in charge of security at the hospital, 250km north of Baghdad, on Wednesday.

    "They freed the detainee after opening fire on the policemen guarding his room. Three of them were killed and six wounded," the captain added.

    The prisoner belonged to a cell linked to al-Qaida that had planned this week to murder Raed Juhi, one of the judges trying Iraq's deposed president in Baghdad, said police in Kirkuk, who dismantled the cell on Saturday.

    Confession

    Doctor Nihad Mohammed at the main Kirkuk hospital said the detainee had been wounded by gunfire when he was arrested with 11 other members of the cell.

    He had been in a room on the second floor of the hospital and guarded by the policemen who were killed on Wednesday's attack by automatic gunfire from the assailants, the doctor added.

    Police said on Saturday that all the members of the cell were Sunni Arabs from Kirkuk, Saddam's hometown of Tikrit and the flashpoint province of al-Anbar, west of the capital.

    They confessed under interrogation, police said, to planning to kill Juhi.

    Saddam and seven of his former deputies are on trial about the massacre of 148 Shia villagers in the early 1980s. The fifth hearing of the trial is scheduled to begin later on Wednesday.

    SOURCE: AFP


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Meet the deported nurse aiding asylum seekers at US-Mexico border

    Meet the deported nurse helping refugees at the border

    Francisco 'Panchito' Olachea drives a beat-up ambulance around Nogales, taking care of those trying to get to the US.

    The rise of Pakistan's 'burger' generation

    The rise of Pakistan's 'burger' generation

    How a homegrown burger joint pioneered a food revolution and decades later gave a young, politicised class its identity.

    'We will cut your throats': The anatomy of Greece's lynch mobs

    The brutality of Greece's racist lynch mobs

    With anti-migrant violence hitting a fever pitch, victims ask why Greek authorities have carried out so few arrests.