ERBIL — A group of masked men affiliated with the pro-Iranian Shia militia of Rab’a Allah attacked a massage parlor in central Baghdad on Thursday night, dragging the female workers to the street and beating them up before burning the facility.
A source from the capital city, wishing to remain anonymous, told BasNews that the attack had taken place in Karrada neighborhood with no security forces’ intervention.
المجموعة التي تطلق على نفسها ربع الله، تنهال بالضرب الجناعي على عاملتين كانتا داخل مركز مساج شيلان الذي داهمته هذه القوة. pic.twitter.com/LZWyOTzaBG— Noor Mytham ALqaissi (@nooraqaissi) November 26, 2020
He explained that different Shia militias are in control of different districts, and they charge local business owners for allegedly protecting them.
“These militias attacked the massage parlor after asking the owner for a huge amount of cash,” the source revealed, arguing that the attack was the consequence of the owner’s refrain from paying the money.
BasNews has learned that the massage parlor is located inside hotel Jabal Beirut.
Rab’a Allah is the militia group which orchestrated last month’s attack on the local representation office of the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) in Baghdad. The group is also said to be responsible for burning Dijla television channel earlier in August.
According to the information obtained by BasNews, Iraq’s interior ministry has launched an investigation into last night’s attack. However, the source, who is familiar with government procedures in Iraq, is skeptical about the outcomes of the investigation, saying that the government has no control over the Shia militias and it cannot prosecute them.