British troops, in an apparent attempt to quash corruption and police collaboration with terrorists, have arrested 12 people in Basra, including 3
police officers. The others in the group of detained persons are said to members of Moqtada Sadr's militia. This comes only a couple of weeks after
the incident in which 2 UK Special Forces soldiers were detained by local police and handed over to local militia before being freed in a dramatic
rescue by the British Army.
British forces have detained 12 people, including three police officers, in connection with a series of deadly attacks on UK forces in southern Iraq.
Brigadier John Lorimer said the raid, in Basra during the night, was aimed at stopping the surge in attacks by local militia on allied troops.
"This terrorism must be stopped, we have a right to protect ourselves and innocent citizens," he said.
Some of the 12 are said to be followers of radical Shia cleric Moqtada Sadr.
This comes two weeks after UK armoured vehicles destroyed the walls of a Basra police station, sparking protests.
The BBC's Caroline Hawley, in Baghdad, said sources told her the arrested officers were from the same Basra police station.
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Interesting developement this. Whilst elements of Iraqs police and Army have been known for a long time to be working with the insurgents and at
other times refusing to engage them in combat, this is the first time that a significant effort has been made to try and root out those
I believe, regardless of whatever feelings I have about the war in the first place, that we now have a resonsibility to ensure that Iraq is a stable
place. Part of that responsibility is ensuring the rule of law and that members of forces that are supposed to working for the security of the people
are not in cahoots with those that are killing them at the same time.
Wether this will be the start of a reforming of the IPS and Iraqi Army or wether elements will start to be more open in their support of the
insurgency, only time will tell, but it is most certainly a testing time for all and will be watched with anticipation, especially the reaction from
the Iraqi public and the Mahdi Army in response to these arrests.
[edit on 7/10/05 by stumason]
[edit on 10/12/05 by FredT]