Left Trinidad to go to Iraq …”TRINI FAMILY IN JAIL”

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An entire Trinidad family is in jail in Iraq.

A woman and her three daughters have been sentenced to prison, while her husband faces the death penalty for their roles in assisting the Islamic State (ISIS).

Anisa Mohammed, 53, and and her three daughters, of all Rio Claro, were sentenced to 20 years in an Iraqi jail on April 22.

Daud Mohammed, 56, will go on trial in the same Baghdad Criminal Court where his wife was jailed for 20 years after surrendering to Iraqi authorities as ISIS insurgents from a foreign country. The entire Mohammed family along with three other Trinidad and Tobago nationals, admitted to entering Iraq illegally in August 2017 during the height of ISIS’ reign of terror in Iraqi cities.

Anisa’s daughters who are also from Navet Village, Rio Claro, have begun to serve their 20-year prison term. They are Sabira, 29, Azizah, 32, and Aiydah Firdaws Waheed-Hasib, 23. They are all married but their husbands, who traveled to Iraq with them, have not be accounted for.

As usual, neither Minister of Foreign Affairs, Dennis Moses, Minister of National Security, Edmund Dillon, or Minister Stuart Young, knows anything about this matter.

Umar Abdullah, leader of the Islamic Front said since the sentencing, he had been liaising with other nationals in Iraq via Facebook, who said the Iraqi authorities had opted to deport all nationals associated with ISIS.

He added, “I was told that our authorities here did not respond.”

Anisa’s father, Nazim Mohammed of Rio Claro, who was among the 114 members of the Jamaat-al-Muslimeen in the 1990 attempted coup.

Anisa, Daud, their daughters and their husbands, were detained in August, 30 kilometres south of Mosul. In September, they were transferred to a detention centre. Human Rights Watch visited the centre and discovered the foreign ISIS fighters, among them the Rio Claro family, had traveled from their home countries to Turkey, crossed the Syrian border and then into Iraq. The women and the men were separated. Umar said Anisa and her daughters have not seen their husbands since.

Nizam, who is Imam of the Navet mosque, said he will continue to seek the assistance from the Red Cross to intervene and he did not expect help from local authorities. “I am praying every day for my daughter and granddaughters. It is all I can do. I beg Allah to help them.”

Umar said despite the 20-year sentence, Government has a moral obligation to intervene. Referring to Duad, he said the death penalty hangs over his head for a crime of arriving in a country illegally. Umar added, “Government has the legal and moral obligation to its citizens wherever they are and should ensure that justice is done to them.”

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Anisa Mohammed and her husband Daud
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Azizah Mohammed, left, and sister Sabira Mohammed
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Aiydah Firdaws Waheed-Hasib

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