Iraq News - Local News - Baghdadpost

Kidnapping children threatens social peace in Baghdad

Iraqi children
The tendency to kidnap children by armed gangs and militias is back again in Baghdad, representing a major challenge to social peace in Iraq's capital. The gangs threaten the families of these children to kill them and throw their bodies in streets unless the families succumb to threats and pay huge amounts of money to these gangs.

International organizations and local authorities concerned have observed this increasing phenomenon of kidnapping children over the past period, warning that the number of cases may increase and have a negative impact on Baghdad residents, especially amid absence of law enforcement.

Official security reports revealed that 25 children were kidnapped in December in Baghdad while scores other cases were not recorded; as some families do not report the kidnapping for fear of endangering the lives of their children.

The kidnapped children's families, therefore, are forced to negotiate with those armed gangs away from security forces.

According to local sources, the majority of these gangs belong to armed Shiite factions that seek to blackmail people in order to finance their militant groups.

Some local parties asserted that kidnapping operations would increase due to four main factors: unemployment, people's need for money, the absence of unity among security bodies in addition to the lack of security awareness.

International reports have recently shown that almost 1,500 Iraqi children were kidnapped over the past three years, and most of them were not released.