Tag Archives: Iraqis

Iraqis protest to defy 'slaughter' in Baghdad as drone hits cleric's home

Iraqis protest to defy 'slaughter' in Baghdad as drone hits cleric's homeThousands attended angry protests in Baghdad and southern Iraq Saturday, grieving but defiant after 20 of them were killed in an attack the previous day that demonstrators described as “slaughter”. The dramatic developments have threatened to derail the anti-government rallies rocking Iraq since October, the largest and deadliest grassroots movement in decades. Late Friday, at least 20 protesters were killed or sustained wounds that later proved fatal, while dozens more were injured, when unidentified gunmen attacked a large building where protesters had camped out for weeks, medics said.



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Tucker Carlson: New audio reveals Fox News host calling Iraqis 'semi-literate monkeys' and using homophobic slur

Tucker Carlson: New audio reveals Fox News host calling Iraqis 'semi-literate monkeys' and using homophobic slurNew audio recordings have emerged purporting to show Fox News host Tucker Carlson calling Iraqis “semi-literate, primitive monkeys” and questioning Barack Obama’s identity as a black man. The Tucker Carlson Tonight presenter can be heard saying white men deserve credit for “creating civilisation” and using a homophobic slur while joking with radio personality Bubba the Love Sponge. Media Matters for America (MMFA), a self-declared watchdog of “conservative misinformation”, said the clips originated from between 2006 and 2011.



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Iraqis head to the polls for first election since the defeat of Islamic State

Iraqis head to the polls for first election since the defeat of Islamic StateIraqis are voting in the first election defeating the Islamic State (Isil), but few people expect its new leaders to stabilise a country beset by conflicts, economic hardship and corruption since the fall of Saddam Hussein in 2003. Depending on the outcome, the poll could bolster Iran's role in Iraq and the Middle East. Aside from geopolitics that have deepened sectarian divisions, Iraq faces an array of challenges after a three-year war against Islamic State which cost the country about $ 100 billion. Much of the biggest northern city of Mosul was reduced to rubble. Security is still threatened by sectarian tensions, which erupted into a 2006-2007 civil war at the height of a 2003-2011 U.S. occupation. The election's victors will have to contend with the fallout from US President Donald Trump's decision to pull out of the nuclear deal with Iran, a move that raised fears among Iraqis that their country will be a theatre of conflict between Washington and Tehran. Iraq has defeated Isil but is still grappling with corruption and economic hardship Credit: AHMAD AL-RUBAYE/AFP/Getty Images The three main ethnic and religious groups – the majority Shia Arabs and minority Sunni Arabs and Kurds – have been at odds for decades, and sectarian divisions remain as deep as ever even though they joined forces to fight Islamic State. "I will participate but I will mark an 'X' on my ballot. There is no security, no jobs, no services. Candidates are just looking to line up their pockets, not to help people," said Jamal Mowasawi, a 61-year-old butcher. The three main candidates for prime minister, all Shia, are incumbent Haider al-Abadi, his predecessor Nuri al-Maliki and Shia militia commander Hadi al-Amiri. All need the support of Iran, which has economic and military sway in Iraq as the primary Shia power in the region. Abadi is considered by analysts to be marginally ahead, but victory is far from certain for the man who raised hopes that he could forge unity when he came to office.  His office released photographs of him voting on Saturday morning and going through the same security pat down as other Iraqi voters.  السيد رئيس مجلس الوزراء الدكتور حيدر العبادي يدلي بصوته في احد مراكز الانتخاب( مدرسة بغداد) في منطقة الكرادة . pic.twitter.com/rBLvrHj2jO— PM Media Office (@IraqiPMO) May 12, 2018 In office Abadi reached out to minority Sunnis but alienated Kurds after crushing their bid for independence. He improved his standing with the victory against Islamic State, which had occupied a third of Iraq. But Abadi lacks charisma and has failed to improve the economy and tackle corruption. He also cannot rely solely on votes from his community as the Shi'ite voter base is unusually split this year. Instead, he is looking to draw support from other groups. Even if Abadi's Victory Alliance list wins the most seats, he still has to negotiate a coalition government, which must be formed within 90 days of the election. Amiri, 63, spent more than two decades fighting Saddam from exile in Iran and leads the Badr Organisation, the backbone of the volunteer forces that fought Islamic State. Victory for Amiri would be a win for Iran, which is locked in proxy wars for influence across the Middle East with Saudi Arabia. But many Iraqis are disillusioned with war heroes and politicians who have failed to restore state institutions and provide badly needed health and education services. "There is no trust between the people and the governing class," said Hussein Fadel, a 42-year-old supermarket cashier in the capital. "All sides are terrible. I will not vote." Hadi al-Amiri, a Shia militia commander running for prime minister, shows his ink-stained finger after casting his vote at a polling station during the parliamentary election in Baghdad Credit: REUTERS/Ahmed Jadallah Some people expressed frustrations at technical problems which kept them from voting in Falluja, which used to support Saddam, was devastated by battles between US troops and insurgents during the occupation and is now far from recovering from the war against Islamic State militants. "I have to vote it's very important. My voice is going to waste. Are they telling me no election? Shall I just go home?," asked labourer Khalid Abd, 65. Critics say Maliki's sectarian policies created an atmosphere that enabled Islamic State to gain sympathy among some Sunnis as it swept across Iraq in 2014. Maliki was sidelined soon afterward, having been in office for eight years, but he is now trying to make a comeback. He is again posing as Iraq's Shia champion, and has proposed doing away with the unofficial power-sharing model under which all main parties have cabinet representatives. Maliki, who pushed for US troop withdrawals, and Amiri, who speaks fluent Farsi and spent years in exile in Iran during Saddam's time, are both seen as closer to Tehran than Abadi. More than 7,000 candidates in 18 provinces, or governorates, are running this year for 329 parliamentary seats. More than 24 million of Iraq's 37 million people are eligible to vote in the election, the fourth since Saddam's fall. In Kirkuk, the main oil city disputed by Iraq's Kurds and the Baghdad government, 90-year-old Najm al-Azzawi has witnessed Iraq's upheaval over many years: Saddam's military adventures and the crippling international sanctions that followed, the US occupation, sectarian bloodshed and Islamic State's reign of terror. But he has not lost hope. "God save Iraqis from the darkness they have been in," he said. "It is the most joyful thing to vote." 



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Iraqis vote as Abadi seeks to fend off Iran-backed rivals

Iraqis vote as Abadi seeks to fend off Iran-backed rivalsBy Maher Chmaytelli and Raya Jalabi BAGHDAD/MOSUL, Iraq (Reuters) – Iraqis voted on Saturday for the first time since the defeat of Islamic State, with Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, a rare ally of both the United States and Iran, trying to fend off powerful Shi’ite groups that would pull the country closer to Tehran. Iraqis expressed pride at the prospect of voting for the fourth time since the fall of dictator Saddam Hussein, but also said they had scant hope that the election would stabilize a country beset by conflicts, economic hardship and corruption. Turnout was 44.52 percent with 92 percent of the votes counted, the Independent High Electoral Commission said, significantly lower than in previous elections.



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Amid the devastation left by ISIS, Iraqis vote, hoping for a better future

Amid the devastation left by ISIS, Iraqis vote, hoping for a better futureWhile Americans have been looking the other way, Iraqis are preparing to vote for Parliament, even in devastated areas like Mosul. In an optimistic sign for democracy, for the first time the parties aren’t divided strictly by religion.



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Iraqis vote in first national election since ISIS defeated

Iraqis vote in first national election since ISIS defeatedIraqis voted on Saturday for the first time since the defeat of Islamic State.



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The Latest: Iraqis reach Turkey's border with Kurdish region

The Latest: Iraqis reach Turkey's border with Kurdish regionIRBIL, Iraq (AP) — The Latest on developments in Iraq (all times local):



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Iraqis declare victory in Mosul over ISIS

Iraqis declare victory in Mosul over ISISIraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi declared victory over ISIS in the fight to free Mosul on Sunday and visited the city to celebrate with Iraqi forces. Iraqi forces are also seen celebrating in the city after almost nine months of fighting.



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Iraqis prepare to celebrate Mosul victory blocks away from raging battles

Iraqis prepare to celebrate Mosul victory blocks away from raging battlesBy Khaled al-Ramahi and Stephen Kalin MOSUL/ERBIL, Iraq (Reuters) – Iraqis prepared on Sunday to celebrate an expected victory over Islamic State in Mosul, just blocks away from battles raging in the last few districts where the militants are dug in. It was from al-Nuri’s pulpit that Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi declared his caliphate three years ago. Authorities are planning a week of nationwide celebrations, according to a government statement, and Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi is expected to visit Mosul to formally declare victory.



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Iraqis hunt for their cars in devastated post-IS Mosul

Iraqis hunt for their cars in devastated post-IS MosulVehicles of all shapes and colours — in varying condition — fill the streets of the northern city as Iraqi forces battle to retake its last western districts from the Islamic State group. “I don’t know who took it,” she said of the car her family left in their west Mosul district of Haramat when they fled fighting in March. Umm Kamal, another returning Haramat resident in her forties, said she had no idea where her family’s car has disappeared to either.



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