BREAKING: Video emerges purporting to show an Iraqi soldier shooting dead an unarmed child
A still from the clip shows the sleeve of one of the gunmen donning an Iraqi flag, suggesting claims that assailants are Iraqi military men may be true. (AFP/File)
Click here to add Baghdad as an alert
Disable alert for Baghdad,
Click here to add Iraqi army as an alert
Disable alert for Iraqi army,
Click here to add Mosul as an alert
Disable alert for Mosul,
Click here to add national army as an alert
Disable alert for national army,
Click here to add Youtube as an alert
Disable alert for Youtube
A video disseminated across Arabic news channels Wednesday purports to show members of the Iraqi army shooting an unarmed, 11-year-old boy in northern Iraq, further muddying the complex battlefield of the war-torn country.
The incident allegedly occured in Samarra, a Iraqi city located on the Tigris River about an hour outside Baghdad, according to Syrian news website, Zaman al-Wasal.
The short clip, which has since been removed from YouTube, shows a group of men in military fatigues, armed with Kalashnikovs and surrounding a young boy with his hands tied behind his back. The men shout insults at the boy then disperse briefly before returning and shooting him multiple times in the head, in what seems to be a 'revenge killing.'
Some reports suggest the gunmen were Iraqi military men from the Shia sect of Islam, as gunmen are heard shouting sectarian slogans and claiming to have taken revenge for a "fellow [Shia's] death."
Neither the content nor the date of the video could be verified, although at one point in the video an Iraqi flag can be seen stitched onto the sleeve of one of the gunmen's fatigues.
Shia Muslims are a minority wordwide but make up the majority sect in Iraq. Heavy clashes between religious sects across the country have only been intensified since the disintegration of the American-equipped Iraqi army during Daesh's initial siege in northern Iraq last summer.
Now, as the national army reboots for a fresh, US-backed attempt to retake the city of Mosul from the militants, sectarian tensions could carve a deeper divide and further instability in the conflict-ravaged country.