U.S. soldiers stand on guard at the Abu Ghraib prison shortly before prisoners are released in Baghdad, June 15, 2006
U.S. soldiers stand on guard at the Abu Ghraib prison shortly before prisoners are released in Baghdad, June 15, 2006. © Ali Jasim - Pool/AFP/File
U.S. soldiers stand on guard at the Abu Ghraib prison shortly before prisoners are released in Baghdad, June 15, 2006
AFP
Last updated: November 1, 2013

Al-Qaeda front group releases execution video

An Al-Qaeda affiliated group has released a video purportedly showing escapees from Iraq's Abu Ghraib prison carrying out executions, the US-based SITE Monitoring Service said Thursday.

In July, militants attacked the notorious facility and another prison with mortars, bombs and gunfire, freeing at least 500 inmates in assaults that cost more than 40 lives.

The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant claimed responsibility.

The newly released 13-minute video contains, among other things, scenes from the July 21 jail break and the execution of an Iraqi army officer and two other men with gunshots to the back of their heads, according to SITE.

SITE said the video was produced by the group's Al-Furqan Media Foundation and posted on jihadi forums and Twitter on Wednesday.

The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant was created by a merger of Al-Qaeda's Iraqi branch and the jihadist Syrian Al-Nusra Front.

The prison breakouts in Abu Ghraib, west of Baghdad, and Taji, north of the capital, illustrated both the growing reach of militants and the deteriorating security situation in Iraq.

Abu Ghraib, already infamous as a center for the torture of opponents of former dictator Saddam Hussein's regime, gained further notoriety in 2004 when graphic pictures emerged showing prisoners being humiliated and abused by their US guards.

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