The Islamic State has arrested several of its senior leaders in Iraq for "treason" on the orders of the terror group’s chief Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, according to a media report.
A terrorist dubbed "the masked gunman" arrested dozens of prominent ISIS leaders for committing treason, Iraqi News reported citing media officials of the Iraqi Ministry of Defence.
The officials were quoted as saying, "A terrorist called ‘the masked gunman’ arrested dozens of ISIS senior leaders by orders of the criminal al-Baghdadi on charges of treason."
"The arrest operations led to noticeable collapse in the ISIS ranks," the officials were quoted as saying by a statement.
The Islamic State is known for brutally punishing fighters and leaders who go against the terror group’s top brass or try to flee the war zone.
Last year, 13 top ISIS leaders, including five high- ranking military commanders, were reportedly executed on Baghdadi’s orders after a failed coup attempt to topple him.
Last month, ISIS reportedly beheaded over 20 of its fighters in full public view for trying to flee a war zone in Iraq’s Mosul city, sending out a chilling warning to others in the terror group against desertion.
Earlier that month, it was reported that ISIS militants who lost Ramadi to Iraqi forces were burned alive in full public view by their own men after they fled to the group’s stronghold of Mosul.
In December, the extremist group had beheaded ten militant fighters "convicted of high treason" for evacuating their post at the battlefront without the group’s permission.