Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Perspective: Little love for Brits in Basra but some fear future

On December 26, British troops destroyed the al-Jameat police station following a raid on the jail which rescued 127 people from what the British labeled a torture and execution chamer run by the Major Crimes Unit.

BASRA, Iraq – As Prime Minister Tony Blair announced on Wednesday the start of the withdrawal of British troops, many Iraqis in British-controlled Basra said they were relieved but some voiced fears it was premature.

Basra, a Shi'ite city that sits on one of the world's largest oil reserves, has seen relative stability in light of the sectarian violence and insurgency gripping central Iraq.

But tension between Shi'ite parties vying for power in Iraq's second largest city has bubbled under the surface.

Residents say Basra has been calm for weeks after a spate of assassinations in 2006 resulted in mutual accusations between different political factions.

Read the rest at the San Diego Tribune