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Iraqi Prime Minister says more attacks likely

Last Updated: Saturday, August 15, 2009 - 17:37

Baghdad: Iraq`s Prime Minister said on Saturday that insurgents will likely intensify their attacks in the run-up to January national elections in an attempt to destroy national unity and political stability.
A flurry of recent bombings has sparked fears that insurgents could re-ignite the sectarian fighting that nearly tore the country apart two years ago, while also raising questions about the ability of Iraqi security forces to maintain stability.

"Terrorists are increasing their attacks here and there because they recognize that we are about to have a political breakthrough," Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki told Shiite tribal members during a meeting here.

"We have taken big steps during a difficult period, and there are still more steps to take to overcome the remaining obstacles," he said.
Al-Maliki warned Iraqis there would be "decisive battles" with insurgents in the months leading up to the January elections when Iraqis will cast ballots for the 275-member Parliament and prime minister.

Al-Maliki, a Shiite, has campaigned for re-election largely on the dramatic decline in violence in the last two years.

But Iraq has suffered a series of deadly bombings in recent weeks, marking the worst violence since the US military turned security of cities over to Iraqi troops on June 30.

Bureau Report

First Published: Saturday, August 15, 2009 - 17:37

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