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Sadr calls for Iraqis to rise up against government

BAGHDAD, Sept. 6 (UPI) -- Moqtada Sadr, the leader of Iraq's Sadrist movement, has urged the Iraqi "resistance" to respond to the U.S. military temporarily closing Baghdad's airspace.

On Aug. 30, U.S. forces temporarily closed Baghdad's airspace to civilian traffic for roughly an hour after U.S. forces in Iraq received a "credible" threat.

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U.S. military spokesman Maj. Angela Funaro said, "We learned that there was a credible indirect fire threat earlier today (Tuesday), which resulted in an elevation in security level and additional security measures enacted, but the airport was not shut down," Al-Sharq al-Awsat newspaper reported Friday.

An Iraqi military officer, speaking on condition of anonymity, said "the region where the Baghdad International Airport is located is one area that many armed groups and organizations -- including the terrorist al-Qaida organization -- viewed as a base for the resistance (to launch their attacks from) in recent years," adding that "the call (by Sadr) to unleash the resistance may grant a number of these armed groups and organizations -- who have placed our forces and our airspace in danger and who have also suffered at the hands of our armed forces -- the pretext to begin operations targeting (Iraqi) citizens and institutions."

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