Archive for Thursday, September 22, 2005

Basra rally denounces ‘British aggression’

September 22, 2005

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— The Basra governor threatened to end all cooperation with British forces unless Prime Minister Tony Blair's government apologizes for the deadly clash with Iraqi police. Britain defended the raid.

In London, British Defense Secretary John Reid and Iraqi Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari tried to minimize the effect of the fighting, saying it would not undermine the relationship between the two nations or their determination to lead Iraq to peace and democracy.

But the fighting raised new concerns about the power that radical Shiite militias with close ties to Iran have developed in the region, questions about the role of Britain's 8,500-strong force in Iraq and doubts about the timetable for handing over power to local security forces.

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