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Iraqi woman who recruited 80 suicide bombers arrested

world Updated: Feb 04, 2009 01:31 IST

Iraqi police have arrested a woman who has confessed to recruiting more than 80 female suicide bombers and who helped orchestrate dozens of attacks, a senior officer said on Tuesday.

Samira Jassim, 51, admitted that she had mentally prepared the women, passed them on to terrorists who provided explosives and then took them to their targets.

"We arrested Samira Jassim, known as 'Um al-Mumenin,' the mother of the believers, who was responsible for recruiting 80 women" suicide bombers, Major General Qassim Atta told reporters in Baghdad.

"She confessed her responsibility for these actions and she confirmed that 28 attempts had been made in one of the terrorists' strongholds," Atta said, without elaborating.

Jassim was arrested on January 21.

Reporters were shown a video of Jassim's confession. Dressed in a traditional black abaya, she explained how she had prepared the women for suicide before sending them for terror training at insurgent bases.

"She sent them to the terrorists, in one of the farms where they provided the suicidal women with bombs, then Samira took the women to the targeted place," Atta said.

Two of the attacks admitted to by Jassim in the video took place in central Iraq's Diyala province, which is considered one of the most dangerous areas of the country.

Al-Qaeda and various insurgent groups still manage to launch attacks in Diyala despite a general decrease in violence elsewhere.