Iraqi daily worker disappears at the hands of the Hezbollah Brigades

Iraqi daily worker disappears at the hands of the Hezbollah Brigades

Al-Alwani was a daily worker in the city of Ramadi in Iraq but had to escape his city in 2015 due to the fights between ISIL and the Iraqi armed forces. Accompanied by his family, he crossed the al-Razzaza checkpoint on November 29, 2015, aiming to reach the province of Karbala. However, al-Alwani was forcibly taken by the Hezbollah Brigades at the checkpoint and since then his whereabouts have remained unknown.

Al-Alwani was a daily worker in the city of Ramadi, located in the province of al-Anbar in Iraq. In 2015 and 2016, as fights erupted in the city between the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) and the government forces, many families fled to safer areas.

In order to leave Ramadi, al-Alwani, accompanied by his family, had to pass through al-Razzaza checkpoint, which was considered as the main crossing point between the provinces of al-Anbar and Karbala. The checkpoint is close to Amiriya, a city in the Fallujah district of the al-Anbar province. During the fight against ISIL, it became the only crossing point for individuals fleeing from the areas of Hit, al-Ruthba, al-Qaim and Ramadi to internally displaced persons camps in Habbaniya.

At the time, al-Razzaza checkpoint was controlled by the Hezbollah Brigades. These brigades were militias belonging to the Popular Mobilisation Units (PMU), which is an umbrella organisation composed of various militias that supported the Iraqi armed forces during the fight against ISIL.

On November 25, 2015, al-Alwani was arrested as he made his way through the checkpoint. He was then forced to go with the Hezbollah Brigades to an unknown location. Since then, his fate and whereabouts have remained unknown.

It is estimated that since October 2014, hundreds of Sunni men and boys were abducted by Hezbollah Brigades at the al-Razzaza checkpoint. The whereabouts of these men remain unknown.

On December 19, 2016, the PMU were incorporated into the Iraqi armed forces, and on March 8, 2018, a Prime Minister’s decree formally included the group into the country’s security forces.

On December 4, 2023, MENA Rights Group submitted an Urgent Action to the UN Committee on Enforced Disappearances, asking the Iraqi government to clarify the fate and whereabouts of Yasser al-Alwani.


December 4, 2023: MENA Rights Group submits al-Alwani’s case to the UN Committee on Enforced Disappearances.
November 25, 2015: Al-Alwani wants to cross the al-Razzaza checkpoint but is abducted by Hezbollah Brigades to an unknown site. His location has remained unknown ever since.