US Seeking 58 Bases; Khamenei Tells al-Maliki not to sign Security Pact

Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki met Monday with Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

According to Farsnews writing in Persian, Khamenei told al-Maliki that the most important and fundamental problem for Iraq at present is the presence of Occupation forces. He affirmed, “We are certain that the people of Iraq, through their intrinsic unity and effort, will cross over these difficult conditions and arrive at a place befitting them. The dream of the Americans most certainly will never be realized.” He emphasized that the Islamic Republic of Iran considers helping the government and people of Iraq a religious duty. He expressed the hope that al-Maliki’s visit to Iran and the agreements he signed there would strengthen relations between the two countries.

Al-Maliki expressed his conviction that Iraqis were attaining a consensus and beginning to speak with a single voice. Khamenei expressed his concern that the Americans would interfere illegitimately and “impudently” in Iraqi affairs and disrupt this building consensus. He compared the current role of the US with the one the British used to play in promoting divide and rule policies even in independent Iraq after 1932. He also expressed his worry that the US would worm itself into every aspect of Iraq’s affairs.

Al-Hayat writes Tuesday morning in Arabic that Khamenei advised al-Maliki not to sign any such security agreement.

Leila Fadel reports that Shiite lawmakers in Iraq told her that the US has requested 58 bases from the Iraqi government as part of the security agreement now being negotiated. The US also is said to want the authority to decide when Iraq has been attacked, and when and how to respond. The lawmakers are afraid that Washington will use that provision to drag them into the middle of a war between the US and Iran.

On being informed by McClatchy of some of these details, the campaign of Senator Barack Obama demanded that any such stipulation of 58 bases be submitted to the US Congress for approval, and that the Iraqis be told that the US does not seek permanent bases in that country. The McCain campaign had no comment.

Al-Hayat reports that Kurdish MP Mahmud Osman is saying that he has seen a second version of the agreement in which the Americans reduced their demands.

McClatchy reports political violence in Iraq for Monday:

‘ Baghdad

- A roadside bomb detonated in Harthiyah neighborhood(central Baghdad)on Karkh bank. Five people were injured with no casualties reported of the American side.

- A car bomb targeted an Iraqi army patrol at Rashid Camp street (east Baghdad).Three people were killed (including 1 soldier) and 12 others wounded(included 4 soldiers and one officer).

- Mortars hit the green zone (IZ) where the Iraqi government headquarters and the foreign embassies are .No casualties reported.

- Around 4pm, gunmen attacked a jewelry shop in Mansour neighborhood. They stole the shop’s content, killed 3 people and injured 2 policemen who were in the area.

- Gunmen launched a propelled grenade on a police patrol in Shaab neighborhood. Two policemen were injured.

- Police found three dead bodies in Baghdad: 2 were found in Karkh bank; 1 in Saidiyah and 1 in Shurta .While 1 was found in Talbiyah in Risafa bank.

Mosul

- A roadside bomb detonated near the cultural group petrol station downtown Mosul city. Five people were injured

-A roadside bomb targeted a police patrol in Al-Sukar neighborhood in Mosul city.Two policemen were injured.

-Gunmen killed two prominent Sheikhs in Mosul city from Ubeid and Abassi tribes who were on their way from Mosul to Tal Afar..

- Gunmen launched a propelled grenade on joint forces from Iraqi police and American armies in Zanjili town .Two Iraqi policemen were injured.

- A roadside bomb detonated in Tawafa neighborhood in Mosul city.One policeman was injured.

Diyala

-Baquba morgue had buried 25 unidentified dead bodies which had been in the morgue for more than 40 days ,Ahmed Foad ,the head of the Baquba morgue.

-Around 7am, a roadside bomb detonated at Al-Muradiyah (9 miles west of Baquba).Four women were wounded where they were doing farming in one of the orchard

- Mortars hit Al-Sineija of Al-Wajihiyah town(north of Baquba).One person was killed and 2 were wounded.

- Gunmen killed a former retired officer at Hibhib (north of Baquba).

-Gunmen killed a woman in Balad Ruz (31 miles east of Baquba).

- A roadside bomb detonated in Dali Abbas (21 miles north Baquba).One person was wounded .

- Gunmen opened fire in Muqdadiyah town (30 miles northeast Baquba).Two people were seriously wounded in that attack.’