Ricochet News

Lebanon holding ISIL leader's daughter and ex-wife

By Tai Chishakwe - Dec 4, 2014
Lebanon holding ISIL leader's daughter and ex-wife

Lebanon’s Interior Minister, Nohad Machnouk, on Thursday said that DNA tests had confirmed that Lebanon was holding the young daughter of alleged Islamic State (ISIL) leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.

Machnouk told Lebanon's MTV television that the child's mother, who is also in custody, was now believed to be one of Baghdadi's ex-wives. They were detained at a border crossing with Syria by the Lebanese army two weeks ago.

He said that the woman, identified as Saja al-Dulaimi, had been travelling with two sons and a daughter when they were detained.

"Dulaimi is not Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi's wife currently. She has been married three times: first to a man from the former Iraqi regime, with whom she had two sons," he said.

"Six years ago she married Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi for three months, and she had a daughter with him. Now, she is married to a Palestinian and she is pregnant with his child."

The minister added: "We conducted DNA tests on her and the daughter, which showed she was the mother of the girl, and that the girl is [Baghdadi's] daughter, based on DNA from Baghdadi from Iraq."

However, the Iraqi government later claimed that the woman was not married to Baghdadi. It said that al-Dulaimi was the daughter of an active member of al-Qaeda's affiliate in Syria, al-Nusra Front.

Arrested and released in Syria

Al-Dulaimi is thought to have been arrested by the Syrian government before being freed in March as part of a prisoner exchange with al-Nusra.

Machnouk said Dulaimi's children were staying at a care centre while she was being interrogated at the Lebanese defence ministry's headquarters.

ISIL has not commented on their detention, but al-Nusra has condemned it.

A Lebanese official reportedly said that having the ex-wife and daughter was a "powerful card to apply pressure" in negotiations with ISIL and al-Nusra, who are holding more than 20 Lebanese soldiers and police hostage.

The jihadist militants are threatening to kill their hostages unless their fighters are freed from Lebanese jails.

 

Photo caption: Lebanon’s Interior Minister, Nohad Machnouk, on Thursday said that DNA tests had confirmed that Lebanon was holding the young daughter of alleged Islamic State (ISIL) leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi (in photo). Photo courtesy of: credityoutube.com