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Entries in Iraqqiya (2)


Iraq (and Beyond) Live Coverage: Security Forces Raid Minister of Finance's Home and Offices

See also Sudan Feature: Explaining Last Month's Coup Attempt...And What's Next
Libya Feature: Optimism Gives Way to Jitters in Benghazi
Syria Live Coverage: Russia Gives Up on Assad
Thursday's Israel, Palestine (and Beyond) Live Coverage: UN Criticises West Jerusalem's Settlement Expansion

1439 GMT: Yemen. Thousands of marchers rally on Thursday to support the Government's restructuring of armed forces, which included the abolition of the Republican Guards, commanded by the son of former President Saleh:

1307 GMT: Egypt. Clashes erupted shortly after thousands of demonstrators gathered at Alexandria's Qaed Ibrahim Mosque to "defend [Islamic] scholars and mosques," and to call for Sharia law.

The rally after Friday noon prayers was initially peaceful, but reports indicate opposition protesters picked a fight with Islamist demonstrators.

Central Security Forces fired tear gas into the crowd, forcing people onto the Corniche near the mosque.

Injuries are reported.

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Iraq Analysis: Is PM al-Maliki Holding Firm for US Withdrawal? (Cole)

Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki made news this week with his interview in The Wall Street Journal, in the course of which he insisted that all US troops would be out of Iraq by January 1, 2012:

WSJ: Some American officials have spoken about contingency plans being drawn now in Washington for the possibility that some American troops will stay after 2011. Do you know about these contingency plans, and do you need troops?

Mr. Maliki: I do not care about what’s being said. I care about what’s on paper and what has been agreed to. The withdrawal of forces agreement [Status of Forces Agreement or SOFA] expires on Dec. 31, 2011. The last American soldier will leave Iraq.

Secondly this agreement is sealed and at the time we designated it as sealed and not subject to extension, except if the new government with Parliament’s approval wanted to reach a new agreement with America, or another country, that’s another matter. This agreement is not subject to extension, not subject to alteration, it is sealed, it expires on Dec. 31 [2011]. 

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