BAGHDAD, Jan. 4 (UPI) -- The assassination of Baghdad's governor Tuesday was a clear indication Iraqi insurgents have stepped up their pre-election intimidation efforts.
Governor Ali al-Haidri was killed in a roadside ambush as his three-car convoy was passing between the city's western districts of Adil and Hurriyah, Radio Free Europe reported.
In Thailand, U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell called the killing a clear attempt to derail the elections scheduled for Jan. 30
"It once again shows that there are these murderers and terrorists, former regime elements in Iraq that don't want to see an election," Powell said. "They don't want to see the people of Iraq choose their own leadership. They want to go back to the past.
"And that's not going to happen."
Al-Haidri told reporters just a week ago insurgent attacks and chronic insecurity were impeding reconstruction efforts in Baghdad, and ironically, predicted a spike in violence in Baghdad ahead of the elections.