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Life Under Islamic State (ISIS) Terrorist Group: Soldier Hussien Hamza’s Story of Poison Bomb

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Hussien Hamza
Private Hussien Hamza of the Iraqi Army's 73rd Brigade tells VOA what it was like to be attacked by a homemade chemical weapon as they beat IS out of one of their last few strongholds. VOA
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– by Heather Murdock

For months, soldiers, civilians and aid workers in Iraq have been reporting Islamic State attacks using homemade chemical weapons. On June 4 in Mosul, militants fired a poisoned mortar at Iraqi forces in a failed attempted to rescue other IS fighters trapped in battle.

Thirty-year-old Private Hussien Hamza of the Iraqi Army’s 73rd Brigade told VOA about his experience in the battle. He spoke in Arabic.

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The operation began at 3:30 a.m. We moved quickly on foot, keeping low and running through the neighborhood. The roads in this part of Mosul are too narrow for humvees so we stayed as close to the walls of the houses as possible for cover.

Islamic State militants mostly retreated, but they fired at us as they fled. They were mainly using grenades and mortars, but also plenty of machine guns and sniper rifles. We saw militants prepare to detonate a car bomb and fired at them as we ran. We defused the bomb.

Iraqi forces move towards the battle in Mosul, June 4, just hours before IS threw a homemade chemical weapon at 73rd Brigade Army soldiers on the frontlines.
Iraqi forces move towards the battle in Mosul, June 4, just hours before IS threw a homemade chemical weapon at 73rd Brigade Army soldiers on the frontlines. VOA

By early afternoon, we had moved nearly a kilometer in, and seven militants were trapped in a house just behind our new frontline. About 10 of us went in, and we fought for hours using hand grenades in close quarters.

The militants wore all black. It looked like traditional Afghan or Pakistani clothes, but they didn’t appear to be Afghan or Pakistani. They cursed us when they saw us. We cursed them back. That really pissed them off.

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By 5 p.m. we killed all seven of them. One of them looked Chinese.

We hadn’t stopped for food or water since the operation began, but we weren’t tired.

Other militants were still firing at the house, trying to rescue their team. A missile hit a car outside the house and it was on fire. Three mortars dropped and poison gas blew in our faces.

After Iraqi forces force IS out of an area, homes and cars are often destroyed and IS mortars continue to fall in Mosul, June 4, 2017.
After Iraqi forces force IS out of an area, homes and cars are often destroyed and IS mortars continue to fall in Mosul, June 4, 2017. VOA

Within seconds I was blinded by the tears streaming down my face and liquid poured out of my nose. White bubbles came from my mouth. I could hear other soldiers coughing.

Some of the men grabbed me and two other soldiers and brought us to a field clinic. Medics said our cases were too advanced to be treated there and they transferred us to a hospital, where they told us we were hit with a chemical attack. I passed out.

After two days of oxygen and injections we were released back to the frontlines but my eyes still hurt and my body is shaking. They say I need to see an eye specialist.

The militants are cowards in the way they fight. They know it’s their last days. They know we will end them. (VOA)

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The Son Of The Islamic State leader al-Baghdadi Dies: IS

Al-Baghdadi's fate is still unknown

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This image from video posted in July purports to show Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi delivering a sermon in Iraq, July 5, 2014. Islamic State media has announced the death of the leader's son.
This image from video posted in July purports to show Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi delivering a sermon in Iraq, July 5, 2014. Islamic State media has announced the death of the leader's son. VOA

The son of the Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi has died in a suicide attack mission in the city of Homs in western Syria, according to the IS media al-Nashir News.

Posting the photograph of a young boy, purportedly Hudhayfah al-Badri, al-Baghdadi’s son, the outlet said he lost his life in an operation against the Russian forces deployed in Homs and the Syrian government forces, referred to as Nusayriyyah by IS.

“Hudhayfah al-Badri (may Allah accept him), the son of the Caliph (may Allah safeguard him), was killed in an inghimasi [suicide] operation against the Nusayriyyah and the Russians at the thermal power station in Homs Willayah,” the news outlet reported.

Inghimasi refers to suicide operations in which a fighter, clad with explosive belt and armed with regular weapons, attacks an enemy position before detonating himself to inflict as much damage on the enemy as possible.

The U.S. military said it has seen the reports of al-Badri’s death but declined any confirmation.

“It would be inappropriate for us to comment on an attack on forces outside the Coalition. We have nothing more to provide,” U.S. Central Command told VOA.

An Iraqi national, al-Baghdadi, whose real name is Ibrahim Awad al-Badri, announced the Islamic State caliphate in the city of Mosul in June 2014 and made himself its caliph. The leader has since become the world’s most wanted man, with a $25 million bounty on his head.

Islamic Terrorism in NYC
Bicycles and debris lay on a bike path after a motorist drove onto the path near the World Trade Center memorial, striking and killing several people, Oct. 31, 2017, in New York. VOA

Al-Baghdadi’s fate is still unknown, with various reports claiming his death and injury several times, including a claim by the Russian Defense Ministry that he might have been hit by a Russian airstrike in 2017.

Those claims have been rejected by U.S. officials and the whereabouts of the elusive leader remain unknown.

Al-Baghdadi’s infamous role in IS has put a spotlight on his family. In March 2014, al-Baghdadi’s wife, Sujidah al-Dulaimi, was released, along with her two sons and daughter, in exchange for 13 nuns taken captive by al-Qaida-linked al-Nusra Front militants.

Also read: Will the Latest Message From Islamic State Leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi Provoke New Attacks in the West?

It was reported that only the girl was al-Baghdadi’s daughter. The two boys belonged to a man his wife had married before meeting al-Baghdadi. (IANS)