Ali Qahtan Abdulwaha seen in a shot from the video released by Kurdish security forces.
ERBIL, Kurdistan Region - An Islamic State (ISIS) militant who confessed to beheading five Peshmerga captives has been captured by the Kurdistan region’s security forces, a statement said Monday.
"Ali Qahtan Abdulwaha, also known as Abu Mriam, born in 1995, was arrested in a raid by counter-terror forces,” the Asayesh security forces’ counter-terror intelligence agency said.
“He was the executioner of Peshmerga captives under the command of Mullah Shwan," it added, referring to a former Erbil-based preacher who joined ISIS just over a year ago and who has also been involved in beheadings by the militants.
The statement did not mention the location and time of Abdulwaha’s arrest.
A video released by the Kurdish agency said that the captured militant had been a member of al-Qaeda before joining ISIS. It said he had carried out the beheadings of five captured Peshmerga on Mullah Shwan’s orders.
"According to his confessions, Ali Qahtan was a member of the al-Qaida terrorist organization, kidnapping and killing several people. He has undergone a 24-day course in execution techniques at a military base in Mosul,” the statement added.
It said he had “also taken part in several battles in different parts of Iraq," and that he had been responsible for guarding Peshmerga captives in Hawija, where he was aware of interrogations carried out by Mullah Shwan.
“During a parade in Hawija, I was guarding one of the cages of the Peshmerga captives," Abdulwaha confessed in the video.
A propaganda video released in mid-March by ISIS, showing at least 18 caged Peshmerga on public display in Hawija, sparked outrage from the families of the victims and the Kurdish street.
According to the last figures released by the KRG, since June 2014 when ISIS stormed across Iraq, 1,258 Peshmerga soldiers have been killed, 300 wounded and 62 remain missing.