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Iraq: Al-Jazeera Interview with Muqtada Al-Sadr - March 29th, 2008




“[…] Muqtada al-Sadr, making his first public appearance since May, said in a TV interview aired Saturday that he was in almost total control of the Mahdi Army and that the ‘liberation’ of Iraq was his militia’s chief goal. The radical Shiite cleric also said the impact of the U.S. presence on Iraq was more negative than that of Saddam Hussein’s Baath party, ousted in the 2003 U.S.-led invasion. Al-Sadr alleged that the government of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, a fellow Shiite, was as ‘distant’ from the people of Iraq as Saddam's Sunni-led regime. […] Al-Sadr’s interview with Al-Jazeera, conducted in an undisclosed location, came as violence was on the rise as part of a nationwide backlash by the Mahdi Army to the government’s attempt to crush Shiite militias and criminal gangs in the southern port of Basra. […]”


Excerpt of an Associated Press article from March 29th, 2008.

Muqtada Al-Sadr


The Video - Excerpts with Subtitles







Original link:

The Complete Al-Jazeera Video without Subtitles







Original link:

War Scenes from Baghdad

Pro Al-Sadr demonstation

Group of Iraqi army deserters

Burnt office of Al-Sadr

Video Credits


The Video


1) Screenshot from a tv interview with Moqtada al-Sadr, which has been broadcasted by Al-Jazeera on March 29th, 2008 and which has since then been re-distributed in excerpts via the Internet by “MEMRI TV”, the TV Monitor Project of the “Middle East Media Research Institute” in Washington, DC. The second interview is the original complete from the Al-Jazeera youtube channel.


War Scenes from Baghdad


1) Iraqis display banners of Shiite radical cleric Moqtada al-Sadr during a protest march in the neighborhood of Shula in northwest Baghdad. Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki on Friday ordered a nationwide freeze on raids against suspected Shiite militants after the leader of the biggest militia complained that arrests of his followers were continuing despite his order to pull his fighters off the streets. - April 4th, 2008 - Khalid Mohammed/AP;

2) A group of Iraqi police officers sit inside a Muqtada al-Sadr office after they surrendered their weapons in Sadr City, Baghdad. Some 40 police officers in Sadr City handed over their weapons to al-Sadr's local office Saturday. - March 29th, 2008 - Karim Kadim/AP;

3) A policeman stands guard at the entrance of a burnt office of Moqtada al-Sadr after clashes in Diwaniya, 180 km south of Baghdad. The office was burnt by members of tribal members after clashes erupted between Iraqi security forces with tribal members and Mehdi army in a village east of Diwaniya on Friday, police said a policeman and tribal member were killed during the clashes. - March 29th, 2008 - Imad al-khozaiReuters;


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