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Iraq jails French and German Islamic State members for life

Iraq jails French and German Islamic State members for life
FILE PHOTO: A member of the Emergency Response Division holds an Islamic State militants flag in the Old City of Mosul, Iraq July 10, 2017. REUTERS/Thaier Al-Sudani/File Photo   -   Copyright  Thaier Al-Sudani(Reuters)
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By Raya Jalabi

BAGHDAD (Reuters) – An Iraqi court sentenced a French man and a German woman to life in prison on Monday after finding them guilty of belonging to Islamic State.

Judge Suhail Abdullah read out the sentences in Iraq’s Central Criminal Court, saying he found French citizen Lahcen Ammar Gueboudj, 55, and the German, Nadia Rainer Hermann, 22, guilty of joining the hardline militant group.

The sentences can be appealed.

Hermann had already been sentenced to a year in jail for entering Iraq illegally. Embassy staff and translators from both countries attended Monday’s hearing.

Islamic State captured a third of Iraq in 2014 but was largely defeated there and in neighbouring Syria last year. Iraq’s government declared victory over the group in December.

Iraq is trying hundreds of suspected members, many of whom were arrested as the group’s strongholds crumbled throughout Iraq. This includes hundreds of foreigners.

Around 20 foreign women, including nationals of Turkey, Germany and Azerbaijan, have been sentenced to death.

(Reporting by Raya Jalabi; Writing by Ahmed Aboulenein; Editing by Robin Pomeroy)

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