Iraq: Radical Shi'ite cleric may lift 6 month ceasefire by week's end

February 20, 2008 10:54

Radical Shi'ite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr has threatened by the end of the week to lift a six-month cease-fire that has widely been credited with helping to reduce violence around Iraq by 60 percent in the past half-year, a spokesman and another official said Wednesday. Sheik Salah al-Obeidi, a spokesman for al-Sadr in Najaf, said that if the cleric failed to issue a statement by Saturday saying that the cease-fire was extended "then that means the freeze is over." Al-Sadr's Mahdi Army is among the most powerful militias in Iraq. According to al-Obeidi, this "has been conveyed to all Mahdi Army members nationwide." The threat was confirmed by another al-Sadr official, who asked not to be named because he was not authorized to speak to the media.

Related Content

September 20, 2019
Turkey stations doctors near Syrian border for possible military operation