Some of today's 'Sons of Iraq' were former Al-Qaeda members
Gunmen using silencers attack Sahwa militiamen manning checkpoint in Iraq's Nadeem village.
TARMIYAH, Iraq - Six members of an anti Al-Qaeda militia were gunned down in broad daylight near the Iraqi capital on Monday, police said, in the latest in a series of such attacks.
The militiamen of the Sahwa (Awakening) movement were manning a checkpoint in Nadeem village, 30 kilometres (19 miles) north of the Iraqi capital, when gunmen using silencers approached at around 9 am (0600 GMT) and shot them dead.
"Five gunmen walked towards the checkpoint and opened fire, killing six Sahwa members," said local police officer Major Thamer Hussein.
The Sahwa, known as the "Sons of Iraq" by the US army, joined American and Iraqi forces to wage war in 2006 and 2007 against Al-Qaeda and its supporters.
They were former insurgents and Al-Qaeda members themselves before.
Control of the Sahwa passed to Iraqi authorities last October and since January their wages — said to have been cut from 300 dollars under US leadership to 100 dollars — have been paid, often late, by the government.
However, the fighters have since been targeted in apparent revenge attacks.
On Sunday, in the town of Rashad, 175 kilometres north of the capital, a Sahwa member was killed when a bomb struck his car, said police Colonel Ahmed Mahmud.
Three others were wounded in the attack, including the local leader of the Sahwa (Awakening) militia, Shujaa Taji al-Rayashi, the apparent target.
And on November 16, gunmen in Iraqi army uniforms launched execution-style attacks west of Baghdad, killing 13 members of a tribe that was led by a Sahwa leader.
Click to view image: '544de40d8385-y193782938032042.jpg'
|Liveleak on Facebook|