Conflict & Justice

Violence spikes in Iraq

A dispute over real estate in a small town like Jilulah is the sort of thing that can set one part of Iraq's army against another. A recent meeting in Jilulah included an Arab general from the Iraqi Army, the American commander from all U.S. forces in Iraq, and a local Kurdish political boss. Now an order has come down from Baghdad for all political groups to move out of political buildings, but the Kurdish leader goes into a speech about the long suffering of Kurds in Iraq history when he responds to this order. There was also a standoff recently in a town just up the road from Jilulah. The Kurdish autonomous government has controlled this nearby town but in August the Iraqi Army moved into areas surrounding the city and the Kurds immediately cried foul as a showdown soon started. The staring contest has lasted for months now and the Kurds say they're only protecting their rights under the new constitution, while the government in Baghdad is just asserting its sovereignty over the whole country. So far heads have remained cool. But everything in this disputed area is now being exactly that, heavily disputed.

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