Iraq Nabs 'Mother' of Female Terrorists

Accused of recruiting 80 suicide bombers
By Peter Fearon,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 4, 2009 3:33 AM CST
The wreckage of a bus bombing in Baghdad in 2008. A female suicide bomber blew herself up near an entrance to the US-protected Green Zone.   (AP Photo/Hadi Mizban)
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(Newser) – Iraqi forces have arrested a woman suspected of recruiting more than 80 female suicide bombers, the Times of London reports. Samira Ahmed Jassim, known as “the mother of the believers,” has confessed to sending 28 women on suicide missions. Jassim also admitted to planning the rapes of many of her recruits, then offering the bombing missions as a way to escape the shame.

Officials says Jassim, 51, “directly supervised” the training of female terrorists, including an elderly woman who was persuaded to blow herself up at a bus station. Female bombers have become increasingly common in Iraq. They can easily hide explosives in their robes and male guards will not search women. Attacks by female bombers jumped from eight in 2007 to 32 last year, according to US military data.

(Read more suicide bomber stories.)