Monday, April 07, 2008

Iraq Headlines 4/7/08

A selection of articles on Iraq from the past week.

Victims of Shiite violence in Basra.Between Iraqi Shiites, a Deepening Animosity
Washington Post
April 7, 2008
As verses from the Koran floated from a loudspeaker, the Shiite militia commander's face glowered. Inside the cavernous funeral tent, a large portrait of his 16-year-old son, Mustafa, hung over the mourners. Abu Abdullah, who fought U.S. troops and Sunni insurgents for five years, never expected his son to die before him. Now, he said, his anger was directed at other Shiites.

Sadr Party Faces Rising Isolation
Associated Press
April 6, 2008
Iraq's major Shiite, Sunni and Kurdish parties have closed ranks to force anti-American cleric Muqtada al-Sadr to disband his Mahdi Army militia or leave politics, lawmakers and officials involved in the effort said Sunday.

State Department to Renew Blackwater's Security Contract in Iraq
Mother Jones
April 5, 2008
While a cloud still hangs over Blackwater, and it remains the subject of multiple investigations, including one by Henry Waxman's House oversight committee, the State Department shocked some Blackwater watchers yesterday by announcing that it would renew the firm's contract for another year.

Palestinian refugees fleeing Iraq fly to Chile
Associated Press
April 5, 2008
More than three dozen Palestinian refugees who fled violence in Iraq and have been stranded on the border with Syria for nearly two years flew Saturday to Chile, where the government has agreed to host them.

Iraq moves on oil, graft laws
United Press International
April 3, 2008
Negotiators are hammering out a new draft Iraq oil law after previous versions stalled, and as Parliament is moving forward on two new laws, one reconstituting the state oil company and another cracking down on oil and fuel smuggling.

Million Iraqi refugees are casualties of war
The Mountain Mail
April 3, 2008
Packed cells hold scores of Iraqi refugees. Men and women who fled a shattered country now wait in silence underground as bureaucracies slowly churn and the world pays little heed. Nearly five years after the invasion of Iraq, this is what sanctuary means for some who survived bombings, beatings and hushed journeys across borders.

Asylum demand end of all deportation of refugees to Greece
Europe World News
April 3, 2008
The European Council on Refugees and Exiles (ECRE) has called on the EU to halt the deportation of asylum seekers to Greece as the Greek authorities in 2007 didn't grant protection to one refugee from Afghanistan or Iraq, the council said Thursday in Brussels. According to ECRE, which represents 63 European refugee- assisting organizations, while Germany, Sweden and Cyprus have accepted over 80 per cent of Iraqi asylum seekers as refugees, Greece's acceptance rate amounts to 0 per cent.

The U.S. must do more to help Iraqi refugees
Kennebec Journal
April 3, 2008
At the very least, the United States has a moral obligation to resettle those Iraqis who helped the American military and to increase aid to those nations now harboring the great majority of refugees, Jordan and Syria. At the very least, the United States must do a better job admitting these vulnerable people than it did in 2007, when Refugees International says only 1,600 of a promised 7,000 Iraqis were resettled.

Iraq’s Sunni Time Bomb
New York Times
April 3, 2008
WHILE the recent fighting in Basra and Baghdad has alerted many Americans to the danger that Shiite-on-Shiite violence poses to our goals in Iraq, it should not divert our focus from another looming threat: that the Sunni tribesmen who have sided with the American-led coalition may turn against us.

Bush shamefully flees Iraqi refugee crisis
Philadelphia Enquirer
April 2, 2008
In several recent speeches on Iraq, there was one issue President Bush never mentioned. That's the issue of Iraqi refugees.

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