News / Middle East

Iraqi PM Urges Expulsion of Al-Qaida in Fallujah

FILE -  Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al- Maliki speaks to the press in Baghdad, Iraq.
FILE - Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al- Maliki speaks to the press in Baghdad, Iraq.
Edward Yeranian
Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki is calling on residents of the mostly Sunni-populated Anbar Province town of Fallujah to expel pro- al-Qaida militants who appear to control their city.  Witnesses say Iraqi government forces outside the city are bombarding areas inside, while warning an offensive could start soon.

In a statement read on state television, Maliki urged Iraqis to “help the government and army to fight terrorists.”  He went on to urge residents to “expel” the Islamic militants who control the city.

Click to enlargeClick to enlarge
x
Click to enlarge
Click to enlarge
A resident of Fallujah indicated he fled because foodstuffs and basic necessities were running short.  Scores of residents have been leaving the city as conditions deteriorate.  Some reports say Islamic militants are now blocking exits from Fallujah.

Falah al Aissawi, a member of the Anbar provincial council, told al-Arabiya TV that “no Iraqi police or army troops remain inside [Fallujah].”  Witnesses reported that Iraqi helicopters and field artillery were bombing positions in at least two areas of the city.

Al-Qaida-linked Sunni insurgents who have been fighting in neighboring Syria took over parts of Iraq's Anbar Province last week.  

The situation is complicated by rising violence between Iraq's minority Sunnis and majority Shi'ites during the past year.  Shi'ite Maliki's government has little support in the province.

Tribal fighters aligned with government forces are seen patrolling the streets in the city of Falluja, 50 km west of Baghdad Jan. 5, 2014.Tribal fighters aligned with government forces are seen patrolling the streets in the city of Falluja, 50 km west of Baghdad Jan. 5, 2014.
x
Tribal fighters aligned with government forces are seen patrolling the streets in the city of Falluja, 50 km west of Baghdad Jan. 5, 2014.
Tribal fighters aligned with government forces are seen patrolling the streets in the city of Falluja, 50 km west of Baghdad Jan. 5, 2014.
The situation in Anbar began deteriorating after government forces stormed a Sunni sit-in protest camp last week in Ramadi.  The arrest of a prominent Sunni member of parliament further exacerbated tensions.  Sunni tribal leaders continue to demand his release.

Meanwhile, Justice Minister Hassan al Shammari accused Maliki and his supporters of allowing Islamic militants to escape from prison last summer in order to create chaos in the country.  There was no immediate response to the claim from the government.

In contrast, Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari told al Sharqiya TV, that the “situation inside [neighboring] Syria is behind the worsening violence in Iraq.”  He urged Iraqis to “stick together and talk with one another” to put an end to the conflict.

Iranian media reported that Tehran's Deputy Military Commander Mohammed Hijazi had offered “weapons and other aid” to the the Iraqi government, if it asks for help.  But he said Iran would “not supply ground troops."

You May Like

Sydney Hostage-taker Failed to Manipulate Social Media

Gunman forced captives to use personal Facebook, YouTube accounts to issue his demands; online community helped flag messages, urged others not to share them More

UN Seeks $8.4 Billion to Help War-Hit Syrians

Effort aimed at helping Syrians displaced within their own country and those who've fled to neighboring ones More

Who Are the Pakistani Taliban?

It's an umbrella group of militant organizations whose objective is enforcement of Sharia in Pakistan 'whether through peace or war' More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: JR from: SAINT PAUL
January 06, 2014 4:40 PM
What a terrible place to live the Earth is becoming! Everywhere violence, fear and death.


by: Bernard from: USA
January 06, 2014 12:56 PM
is this revolting Iranian collaborator trying to involve US in removing his legitimate Sunni Arab Democratic opposition...??? Hey Kerry give him the "peace solution" you gave the Israelis... see how he will react...


by: C. Wayne Ashcraft from: Alameda, CA
January 06, 2014 12:53 PM
The current situation in Iraq is just a reminder that the notion of nationhood is still a long way off. Tribalism linked to a sect of Islam dominates which is the basis for a civil war. It also explains the absence of a peacemaker like Martin Luther King or Mandela. This is a sad situation where there is the absence of imagination to resolve the differences between the Islamic sects.


by: Whistleblower from: District Of Criminals
January 06, 2014 10:09 AM
Expel the CIA, and you will expel Al-Qaeda, whom the CIA created, arms, fund$, runs, and trains. Just the FACTS, people.
TIME TO WAKE UP.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Putin: Russian Economy to Rebound in 2 Yearsi
X
December 18, 2014 5:13 PM
Russian President Vladimir Putin held his annual end-of-the-year news conference Thursday, tackling questions on the Russian economy, the crisis in Ukraine and Russian relations with the west. VOA's Jeff Custer reports.
Video

Video Putin: Russian Economy to Rebound in 2 Years

Russian President Vladimir Putin held his annual end-of-the-year news conference Thursday, tackling questions on the Russian economy, the crisis in Ukraine and Russian relations with the west. VOA's Jeff Custer reports.
Video

Video Nigerians Fleeing Boko Haram Languish in Camp Near Capital

In its five-year effort to impose Islamic law in northeastern Nigeria, the Boko Haram extremist group has killed thousands of people and forced hundreds of thousands to flee. Some of those who ran for their lives now live in squalor on the edges of the capital, Abuja. Chris Stein reports for VOA.
Video

Video Detained Turkish Journalists Follow Teachings of US-Based Preacher

The Turkish government’s jailing of critical journalists has sparked international condemnation and is being seen as an effort to undermine the followers of an ailing Turkish preacher based in the United States. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky has more.
Video

Video Will Pakistan School Shooting Galvanize Pakistan Against Extremism?

The attack on a military school in Pakistan’s northwest city of Peshawar left 141 dead, including 132 children. Strong statements of condemnation poured in from across the world. The country announced three days of mourning, and the leadership, both political and military, promised retribution. VOA's Ayesha Tanzeem looks at how likely the Pakistani government is to clamp down on all extremist groups.
Video

Video ‘Anti-Islamization’ Marches Increase Tensions In Germany

Anti-immigrant rallies in Germany have been building in recent weeks, peaking Monday night in the city of Dresden where tens of thousands of people turned out to demonstrate against what they call the ‘Islamization’ of the West. Germany has offered asylum to more Syrian refugees than any other country, and this appears to have set off the protests. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.
Video

Video Refugees Living in Kenya Long for Peace in the Home Countries

Kenya is host to numerous refugees seeking safe haven from conflict. Immigrants from Somalia face challenges in their new lives in Kenya. Ahead of International Migrants Day (December 18) Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.
Video

Video Turkey's Authoritarianism Dismays Western Allies

The Turkish government has been defiant in the face of criticism at home and abroad for its raids targeting opposition media. The European Union on Monday expressed dismay after President Recep Tayyip Erdogan lashed out at Brussels for criticizing his government's action. Turkey's bid to be considered for EU membership has been on hold while critics accuse the NATO ally of increasingly authoritarian rule. Zlatica Hoke reports.

All About America

AppleAndroid