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U.S. says violence in Iraq will be contained

Tuesday, August 30, 2011 - 02:43

Aug. 30 - While a recent spike of violence in Iraq raises concerns as U.S. forces prepare to leave, the U.S. military maintains they see no return to sectarian warfare. Deborah Lutterbeck reports.

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Running for cover in Iraq. Citizens seek safety after a suicide bomber himself up at Baghdad mosque Sunday. At least 24 people are killed in the attack on a mosque that is an important Sunni religious site and is frequented by top Iraqi Sunni leaders The attack raises concerns of an al Qaeda resurgence as U.S. forces aim to leave by the end of the year. Attacks on Sunni and Shi'ite mosques are especially sensitive in Iraq where a power-sharing government still struggles to overcome the sectarian slaughter that dragged Iraq to the edge of civil war after the 2003 U.S.-led invasion. But this time it is different says U.S. Major General Jeffrey Buchanan in Baghdad who was made available to Reuters by the Pentagon. SOUNDBITE: U.S. Major General Jeffrey Buchanan(English), saying: "One thing that has changed is the people's determination. There is a universal determination not to be drawn into a secretion conflict that we saw in years past, In fact the Iman from the mosque that was bombed this weekend said in the funeral services that we should not think of these people as Sunnis or Shia but they are terrorist and terrorist have no religion./" Buchanan says that Al Qaeda remains a threat in Iraq. SOUNDBITE: U.S. Major General Jeffrey Buchanan(English), saying: "You still have al Qaeda group with the same aims, but what they don't have any of of the sort of freedom of maneuver that they had in the past. So, it is an organization that has diminished capabilities when it come to recruiting fighters -- to bring foreign fighters across the border to plan and conduct operations but I do want to underscore that they do still remain a dangerous threat and they are capable of violent and terrible actions/" Despite a recent increase of attacks, overall violence in Iraq has dropped sharply since the height of sectarian bloodletting four years ago. Deborah Lutterbeck, Reuters.

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U.S. says violence in Iraq will be contained

Tuesday, August 30, 2011 - 02:43

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