Thursday, May 26, 2005

News update.

At this moment, there's a press conference for the ministers of defense and interior in Baghdad and they're shedding light on a new security campaign called "The Thunderbolt" they mentioned that the campaign will focus on securing Baghdad and eliminating terror activities through "exceptional" security measures.
The ministers announced that this "huge campaign" will include the deployment of 40,000* Iraqi police and army men.

The 1st phase of the campaign shall be launched next week and a "powerful ring" of security forces will be created around Baghdad.
The minister of interior added more details; Baghdad will be divided into two sectors; western and eastern sectors and each sector will in turn be divided into a number of sub-sectors (7 in the east and 15 in the west) I guess this is because the western part is larger in size and relatively witnessing higher rates of violence.

"There will be 675 fixed checkpoints distributed all over the city as well as hundreds of mobile patrols" said the minister of interior.
Answering a question from a reporter about if this campaign is going to be limited to Baghdad only, the minister of defense said "We intend to start working on securing Baghdad next week and we have plans to expand the operations soon after to deal with the terrorists in all other cities".

He also confirmed that contacts were made with the ministry of justice which promised to provide a sufficient number of judges and interrogators to interrogate the expected detainees and to put them on trial when enough evidence are found.

By the way, this campaign seems to be the same one I read about two days ago and talked about in yesterday's post.
The minister of interior also gave a short briefing on the latest achievements of the operations carried out by the Iraqi forces between May 22 and May 26; he said that 578* suspects were arrested in Abu Ghraib, 4 large caches of weapons found, 118 vehicles prepared for car-bomb attacks were destroyed (between April 15 and May 26*) and 6 million dollars confiscated when a terror cell was arrested in Baghdad.

The last defense minister's last words were "it's time to move from defense to offense".

Well, I cannot agree more.

*values were corrected later.

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