Iranian Television on Basra Tensions
BBC World Monitoring translated this report on Al-Alam, the Iranian Arabic-language satellite program, on Sept. 14:
September 14, 2005, Wednesday
Basra residents blame UK troop “violations” for increase in militant attacks
SOURCE: Al-Alam TV, Tehran, in Arabic 17:13 GMT, 14 Sep 05
Text of report by Iranian Arabic language television news channel Al-Alam on 14 September
[Presenter] In Basra, popular and official opinion has attributed the escalation in militant attacks against British forces in southern Iraq to their continuing violation of the rights of the residents, in addition to the lack of justification for theses forces to remain in the region.
[Correspondent N’amah Abd-al-Razzaq] Eight US and three British dead, and a further ten wounded. This is the toll of the militant attacks that have targeted the US and British forces in southern Iraq in the last week. This follows a clear escalation in the militant attacks targeting the foreign forces specifically in Basra.
These statistics are based on the reports published by the British forces in southern Iraq. However, some eye witnesses have indicated a larger toll, especially in the rocket attack that targeted the British and US consulates in the presidential complex. Because the site is completely fortified, it was impossible to confirm the final toll of the attack and everyone had to make do with the British story which denied that there had been any casualties.
Popular and official opinion in Basra says that this noticeable escalation in the level of militant operations is the result of the occupation troops overstepping the mark and continuing to violate the dominant values of Iraqi society.
[Amr Thamir Ali, traffic policeman] This is the result of the conduct of the British towards the people. [Words indistinct]
[Ramadan al-Yasiri, Islamic Vanguards Party] Many citizens do not accept how they are being treated [changes thought] the problems with these troops. As a result the citizens are feeling a mixture of anger and dissatisfaction with these forces.
[Correspondent Abd-al-Razzaq] However, some people think that the increase in the number of armed attacks in Basra is linked to the emerging political process and is an attempt by some sides to obstruct it through escalating the violence . . . ‘