Women detained by Iraqi forces for their ties with the "Islamic State of Iraq and Syria" (ISIS) are providing "important" information to the authorities about the group's cells and fighters, experts said.
Their confessions have led to the dismantling of several dangerous terror cells, including one of "the most dangerous battalions" to have operated under ISIS in Iraq, an Iraqi security expert revealed to Diyaruna on Monday (February 26th).
More than 1,000 people affiliated with ISIS, mostly women and children, have been arrested by Iraqi forces or surrendered to them during the fighting to liberate the city of Mosul and other cities in Ninawa province.
Security expert Fadel Abu Ragheef quoted security information confirming these women "are showing clear co-operation and great assistance to the security and intelligence services".
"There are many women detained on charges of belonging to or being affiliated with ISIS," he told Diyaruna.
Some of them have been tried for their involvement in the bloodshed of innocent people, but the majority are still being interrogated, he said.
Most of the women are from Central Asia, former Soviet republics and Turkey, he said.
Dismantling al-Battar battalion
Security forces have "gained important information during the interrogation of these women", Abu Ragheef said, noting that this information has led Iraqi forces to arrest wanted ISIS elements and senior commanders.
"The most prominent security achievement yielded by this co-operation is the termination of the remains of an ISIS battalion known as the al-Battar battalion," he said.
The battalion, he said, is one of the most dangerous groups linked to ISIS, and the most brutal.
It consists of Iraqi and foreign fighters who are considered among the group's "elite elements", he added.
"They no longer have any presence [in Iraq]," he said, adding that some have been arrested and others killed in security operations based on tips from the group's arrested women.
The women's confessions also have led the security forces to discover secret ISIS hideouts, workshops for making improvised explosive devices (IEDs), and warehouses for the storage of weapons and explosives, Abu Ragheef said.
The Iraqi judiciary has recently issued sentences against a number of foreign women on charges of involvement in helping ISIS carry out terror operations in Iraq.
Other women have been released and returned to their countries with their children after their innocence has been confirmed.