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Police arrest Shiite cult leader in Iraq

Police arrest Shiite cult leader in Iraq

Police say they arrested a leading figure in a messianic Shiite cult that has battled with Iraqi and U.S. forces.
The police chief in the southern city of Basra, Maj. Gen. Adil Dahham, says the arrest probably thwarted plans by the group known as "Soldiers of Heaven" to carry out attacks against Shiite pilgrims next week.
Police said Wednesday that Arshad Abid Dayem was arrested late Tuesday.
The cult launched attacks the past two years during the Shiite Ashura holiday. Dozens of mostly cult members were killed in Najaf and Karbala, two of Iraq's holiest cities, during the battles.
Ashura, which falls on Jan. 7, is an important holy days for Shiite Muslims. It marks the death of Islam's Prophet Muhammad's grandson Imam Hussein.


Updated : 2021-03-06 19:30 GMT+08:00