Increasingly desperate to get a handle on the surging al-Qaeda in Iraq (AQI) seizure of territory, Iraq has announced a bounty of $17,200 for each foreign militant linked to AQI killed, and another $25,800 for each captured.
AQI has been taking over increasing amounts of territory in recent weeks, including large portions of the Anbar Province and more recently the town of Sulaiman Bek.
The bounty announcement comes in the wake of pledges by the Maliki government of millions of dollars in cash and weapons to Sunni militias in return for fighting AQI in Anbar.
The plan is risky, however, as Iraq has struggled with corruption for years, and the offer of cash for “dead foreign fighters” may encourage cash-starved militias to kill random foreigners and try to pass them off as AQI.
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