Tuesday, October 17, 2006


Security Ministry - Mahdi Militia infiltrated by criminals

Security, Politics
Hundreds of criminal gang members have joined the Al Mehdi army, following Moqtada Al Sadr's Al Sadr Movement, said a report by the Ministry of National Security. Some of these criminal gang members have taken cover in Al Sadr city in Baghdad, where they hide from the prying eyes of police forces and carry out their illegal operations, said the same report. The report also said that some of these gang members have been elevated to leading positions in the Al Mehdi army, where they have become decision makers. This has contributed greatly to the increase in crime in Baghdad.
"Al Sadr ordered those close to him to investigate the truth in this respect," said Riyad Al Nouri, one of the leading figures in the Al Sadr Movement. "Al Sadr's renouncing of all criminal elements that might have infiltrated the Mehdi army is one step towards clarifying matters. But the US army is close to initiating a huge military operation against the Al Sadr Movement and the Mehdi army," he added.
"There were intensive meetings between leading Shiite political and religious figures and Al Sadr, and it was agreed that Al Sadr must renounce the criminal acts associated with the Al Mehdi army. All parties agreed to cooperate to bring the criminals to justice. Al Sadr also agreed to monitor the elements working under the banner of the Al Mehdi army," said Dia Al Deen Al Fayadh, a Shiite religious leader. Al Sadr Movement activists expect the condemnation to put Arab Sunnis at ease, as many believe the Al Mehdi army intends to wage a sectarian war against Sunnis.

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