U.S. forces arrest another Iraqi official on most-wanted list

Thursday, June 5th 2003, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

BAGHDAD, Iraq (AP) -- U.S. forces in Iraq are holding Ayad Futayyih Khalifa al-Rawi who commanded a militia force that supposedly included millions of volunteer fighters, a military statement said Thursday.

Al-Rawi was No. 30 on the U.S. list of the 55 most-wanted former Iraqi officials, according to a brief statement released by the U.S. Central Command.

Al-Rawi was chief-of-staff of the al-Quds Force, which was set up three years ago by Saddam Hussein to act as a backup to the regular army.

Iraqi authorities claimed that the force consisted of seven million members, mostly civilians who received some basic military training. The real numbers were believed to have been much smaller and it played almost no role during the last war.