01 Jul 2014 04:00
Iraqi soldiers hiding near the Al-Ukhaider Fortress, 50km south of Karbala, having been ordered to retreat from the Syrian border. On the way to supply the border patrol with aid, Sayed Mohammad al-Talkani, the representative of Muqtada al-Sadr, and Iraqi Member of Parliament, Fatm al Kreiti, found 2,500 soldiers sheltering in the archaeological site. They lacked food and water; many of them suffered from starvation and some had become sick and died. When asked why they retreated they said that they received orders from the officers, with no reason given, to abandon their posts and were told to leave the border open for ISIL to enter and seize the abandoned weapons left there.