The detainees were paraded at a televised news conference attended by Interior Minister Jawad Bolani and several generals.
"Security forces arrested 39 Al-Qaeda members who run terrorist operations in Anbar and also support other criminal operations in Baghdad, and who also tried to invite foreign Al-Qaeda fighters to Iraq," Bolani said.
No details were given of any operations the group were plotting, whether any munitions or equipment were seized or when the raids that led to the arrests were carried out.
On Saturday the interior ministry said security forces had captured 12 Al-Qaeda fighters suspected of helping to take Christians hostage in the 31 October church siege that left 44
worshippers and two priests dead.