By KIM GAMEL, Associated Press Writer
BAGHDAD (AP) â€” An al Qaeda-linked insurgent shot and killed his own father as he slept in his bed Friday for refusing to quit his job as an Iraqi interpreter for the U.S. military, police said, a rare deadly attack on a close family member over allegations of collaborating with the enemy.
The attack happened on a particularly bloody day in Iraq, with at least 27 people killed nationwide in bombings and ambushes largely targeting the houses of government officials, Iraqi security forces and those seen as allied with them.
Hameed al-Daraji, 50, worked as a contractor and translator for the U.S. military for seven years since shortly after the U.S.-led invasion that toppled Saddam Hussein in 2003.
He was shot in the chest about 3 a.m. while sleeping in his house in Samarra, a former insurgent stronghold 60 miles (95 kilometers) north of Baghdad, police Lt. Emad Muhsin said.
Authorities arrested the son and his cousin, saying the young men apparently were trying to prove their loyalty after rejoining the insurgency. Police were also looking for another son who allegedly took part in the attack.
Citing confessions, police said the son whom they arrested, Abdul-Halim Hameed, 30, was a former member of al Qaeda in Iraq who quit the terror network in mid-2007 under pressure from U.S.-Iraqi security operations that have led to a sharp drop in violence in the area.
Col. Hazim Ali, a senior security official in Samarra, said Hameed, his 19-year-old cousin and 24-year-old brother remained committed to extremist causes.
With U.S. troops withdrawing from the country, Ansar al-Sunnah, an insurgent group with ties to al Qaeda, recently lured the men into their ranks with offers of hard cash, Ali said.
The U.S. military said it was looking into the report.
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