The Islamic State terror group has burned the corpses of five of its fighters due to the belief that they had contracted the deadly Ebola virus, according to an Iraqi health official who told Kurdish paper Rudaw.
“The Islamic State organization incinerated five militants infected with Ebola to prevent further spread of the disease in Mosul (Iraq),” said Faisal Ghazi, who is part of Iraq’s Health Committee in its council of ministries. He added, “ISIS had proof that these militants were infected with Ebola.”
On New Year’s Day, Breitbart News reported that multiple Iraqi and Kurdish news outlets had claimed that Islamic State fighters in Mosul, Iraq had contracted the deadly virus. Iraqi news outlets claimed at the time that Ebola had started to spread in a Mosul hospital.
A World Health Organization (WHO) official told Mashable at the time, “We have no official notification from the Iraqi government that it is Ebola.
Kurdish news site Xendan elaborated further, reporting that the ISIS fighters’ symptoms were similar to those who had contracted Ebola. An Iraqi paper claimed that the virus had made its way into Mosul through jihadists who were recruited out of Africa.
However, most of the Islamic State’s Africa-based recruits have come from countries where Ebola has not had a documented presence. It also remains unclear whether Mosul health officials would even have the means, training or education necessary to test for Ebola. Furthermore, an Iraqi government spokesman, Ahmed Rudaini, told Al-Maalomah News that Mosul simply doesn’t have the technology available to confirm an Ebola case.