The Iraqi authorities have exhumed two mass graves northwest of Mosul where 123 out of 500 crops were collected for the prisoners and prison staff slaughtered at the hands of Daesh militants back in 2014.
On June 13, the office of affairs and protection of mass graves, a department of Political Prisoners’ Association, has exhumed two mass graves adjacent to Badoush prison.
“The bodies belong to victims killed by Daesh when they took over Mosul in 2014,” said Dhiya Karim, director of office of affairs and protection of mass graves, an Iraqi state body.
The two mass graves are huge and complicated and “the national teams without consultation and experience of international experts can’t fully exhume and identify the bodies as the site is tough and water passed through the mass graves,” he added.
Karim believes over 500 people were buried in both mass graves. He described the mass graves of Khasfa, south of Mosul, Alo Antar and Zakhrosiya in Talafar and Shingal, where thousands of people were killed by Daesh and buried there, as being even more complicated.
Khasfa and Alo Antar are two mass graves in Mosul for thousands of civilians slaughtered by ISIL militants.
Wathiq Rauof, director of Nineveh forensic medicine, said following DNA tests, the bodies will be retuned to their families for burial.
“The victims are from all over Iraq. They are mainly prisoners and staff of Badoush prison, men and women,” he added.
The militants of the so-called Islamic State in Iraq and Levant ISIL took over Badoush prison on the morning of 10 June 2014, UNHCR says, the day they overran Mosul and one third of Iraqi territories till their ousting in 2017.
The more than 3,000 inmates at the prison were separated into groups according to their ethnic or religious affiliation.
Sunnis were freed, while more than 600 others, mainly Shia, were loaded on trucks, driven to a ravine in an isolated stretch of desert about 2km (1.2 miles) away, and shot one by one by militants in the operation called Badoush prison massacre.
IS militants have targeted the religious minorities especially the Ezidis who they accuse of being heretics.
The abuses inflicted by the extremist group included killings, torture, amputations, ethno-sectarian attacks, rape and sexual slavery of women and girls.
According to the United Nations, more than 200 mass graves containing the remains of up to 12,000 people have so far been discovered in Iraq, which concluded IS has committed acts that may amount to war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide.
Out of 80 mass raves and tens of individual graves, only 20 mass graves has been exhumed since March 2019 up to the present.