Maliki: “War Against al-Qaeda Will Be Long”

Agence France Presse (AFP)21.01.2014 Iraq
Maliki: “War Against al-Qaeda Will Be Long”

Maliki: “War Against al-Qaeda Will Be Long”

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The war on al-Qaeda and its affiliates will be long, Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki said during his weekly address on Wednesday, vowing that it will only end in “victory.”

The Premier also urged the international community to stand against countries that are supporting terrorism, saying that Iraq is “fighting to defend the world, humanity and justice.”

He said battling these al-Qaeda groups are not enough, instead he called for countries to “end these groups’ political, social, and financial support.”

The al-Qaeda affiliate group known as the State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), emboldened by successes in the civil war raging in Syria, made a push to seize parts of the mainly Sunni Anbar province in Western Iraq.

Maliki also urged tribal allies in Anbar to continue fighting on the government’s side, adding that “the tribesmen should take a firm stance in order to expel the terrorists from their areas so that peace would prevail there.”

As Iraqi government forces and allied tribal militias launched an all-out offensive against al-Qaeda-linked militants on Sunday in the Sunni stronghold of Anbar, Iraq’s Premier accused “diabolical” and “treacherous” Arab states of being behind strife in the country.

In his remarks, al-Maliki said suicide bombers were coming to Iraq from as far as Morocco, Libya and Yemen, but stopped short of directing his disparaging sentiments against any specific country.

In 2013 alone, the U.N. said violence killed 8,868 people across Iraq.

Meanwhile, the Defense Department is preparing small arms and ammunition for shipment to Iraq in response to a request from its Prime Minister, Pentagon spokesman Army Col. Steve Warren said Monday.

In accordance with the security framework established when U.S. troops departed Iraq in December 2011, discussions about ways to improve the Iraqi military are ongoing, Warren said.
Source: AFP


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