ISIS Burns ’45 People’ to Death in Iraqi City of al-Baghdadi, Say Reports

February 17, 2015 Updated: February 17, 2015

The Islamic State, or ISIS, burned more than 45 people to death in Iraq because they worked for the Iraqi security forces, according to a report on Tuesday.

Details about the killings are not clear yet, but the killings are believed to have been near the town of al-Baghdadi in western Anbar province in Iraq. Al-Baghdadi, which located near an air base that houses more than 300 U.S. Marines, was recently captured by Jihadist Islamic State militants last week.

According to the Deutsche Presse-Agentur news agency, 30 people were burned to death. Meanwhile, an official told the BBC that 45 people were burned.

Col. Qasim al-Obeidi told the BBC that a compound that houses the families of security personnel was attacked by Islamic State militants. He pleaded for help from the government and the international community.

Over the weekend, the Iraqi army said it liberated the al-Baghdadi district from the Islamic State after it was captured. Aziz Khalaf al-Tarmouz, the security deputy of the Anbar governor, said Iraqi security forces “killed dozens” of Islamic State militants “in their operation to recapture al-Baghdadi district’s center,” according to the al-Manar publication.

Meanwhile, an international rights group said Shiite militias allied with Iraqi security forces have escalated a campaign of abuse against Sunni residents in recent months, as gunmen assassinated a prominent Sunni tribal leader during an ambush in a Shiite district in Baghdad.

New York-based Human Rights Watch said in a statement that the militiamen, who are part of the fight against the Islamic State group, have begun driving Sunni families from their homes, kidnapping or summarily executing them in some cases.

The report said the abuses are taking place mainly in areas that were seized from the Islamic State group — which holds about a third of Iraq and Syria.

The militias — mainly volunteers who answered the call-to-arms from Shiite clerics — are growing more brutal, stoked by a desire for revenge against the Sunni extremists who have frequently butchered and attacked Shiites.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.