Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kazemi announced, on Friday, the arrest of the killers of the Iraqi analyst Hisham Al-Hashemi.
A senior official told MEE that the man who shot Hisham al-Hashemi was a police lieutenant and sometimes worked with the Hashd’s 47th paramilitary brigade.
The official said the killer was a member of the Hezbollah Brigades.
The website indicated that four Prime Time Zone were arrested in the case.
State television broadcast a confession to the main perpetrator shortly after announcing his arrest.
Iraqi television broadcasts the confessions of the accused of killing the researcher Hisham al-Hashemi, without explaining the reason for his killing. pic.twitter.com/SEeJeOfZhY
— ZaidBenjamin (@ZaidBenjamin5) July 16, 2021
He indicates that he received weapons and instructions to carry out the assassination, but he refused to mention who gave the orders or whether he was a member of a particular organization.
In a statement on Twitter, Al-Kazemi said he had fulfilled his promise to arrest the suspects, as he continues to face criticism for not doing enough to hold paramilitary armed groups to account for the kidnappings and killings.
Al-Kazemi wrote on Twitter, “We promised to arrest the killers of Hisham al-Hashemi. And we kept the promise.”
The Prime Minister said: “We promised to arrest the killers of Hisham al-Hashemi and we fulfilled the promise, and before that we put the death squads and killers of Ahmed Abdel Samad before justice, and our forces arrested hundreds of criminals involved in the blood of innocents.”
He continued: “Everyone has the right to criticize. We do not work for cheap advertisements, nor do we bid, but we do our duty as much as we can to serve our Prime Time Zone and achieve the right.”
We promised to arrest the killers of Hisham al-Hashemi and we fulfilled the promise, and before that we put the death squads and the killers of Ahmed Abdel-Samad before justice, and our forces arrested hundreds of criminals implicated in the blood of innocents.
Everyone has the right to criticize, we do not work for cheap ads or bid, but we do our duty as much as we can to serve our Prime Time Zone and achieve the right
— Mustafa Al-Kadhim July 16, 2021
The killing of Hisham al-Hashemi
Hisham Al-Hashemi, a prominent government advisor and political leader, was killed in July 2020 by unknown assailants.
Many pointed to Iran-backed militias, of which al-Hashemi was a critic, as possible culprits.
His death came just days after a raid on a camp belonging to Kataib Hezbollah, an Iran-backed armed group designated as a terrorist organization by the United States.
Read also: Hezbollah Brigades assassinates Hisham al-Hashemi.. What is the story of Abu Ali al-Askari, who threatened him with physical liquidation and fulfilled his promise!
“He was monitored by the intelligence services and the apparatus headed by Lieutenant-General Ahmed Abu Ragheef,” said the senior official familiar with the investigation, who spoke on condition of anonymity.
“He and the gang members are under surveillance for a long time,” he added.
The official said the suspect was arrested in the southern city of Nassiriya.
Speaking before the videotaped confession was broadcast on state TV, the official said: “He has confessed to belonging to Kataib Hezbollah. But this information will be deleted from [التسجيلات]”.
He added, “The recognition will include that [السيارة] The one who carried out the assassination moved from the Albu Aitha / Al-Zarq area south of Baghdad, where the camp that was stormed days before the assassination of Hisham is located.
“A crisis threatens their survival”
And the Supreme Judicial Council in Iraq announced last week the issuance of arrest warrants for the killers of al-Hashemi.
The head of the council, Faiq Zeidan, warned that they would consider issuing the death sentence against the perpetrators, as well as those responsible for the assassination of activists and demonstrators.
Zaidan told the official Iraqi News Agency, “The issue of the demonstrators’ killers is complex and thorny and involves many parties, and there are political parties that intervened for electoral purposes and overthrew others.”
Since the start of the massive anti-government protests in Iraq in October 2019, hundreds of activists and journalists have been kidnapped, disappeared and killed, by security services and paramilitary groups.
The number escalated sharply after the US assassination of Iranian military commander Qassem Soleimani and paramilitary leader Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis in January 2020.
Al-Kadhimi has repeatedly promised to suppress the activities of paramilitary groups in Iraq. This campaign has not yielded much so far, as the prime minister is seen as lacking the will and strength to tackle the entrenched armed groups.
In one of the last articles he wrote before his death, al-Hashemi warned that the armed factions possess “economic, military, media and societal power that makes [الفصائل] able to deter anyone who tries to threaten its interests.”
He said it would be dangerous for militias to believe that Al-Kazemi’s repressive attempt constitutes a “crisis that threatens their survival.”
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