Audit gives poor marks to Iraq

July 31, 2012 at 9:51 AM
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WASHINGTON, July 31 (UPI) -- Iraqi indecisiveness and poor capacity from the U.S. government doomed a training program for Iraqi police officers, an auditor said.

A U.S. State Department training program for Iraqi police is getting cut to 10 percent of the original force. Stuart Bowen, special inspector general for Iraq reconstruction, told U.S. magazine Foreign Policy it was right to cut back the project given the lack of interest from the Iraqis.

"The U.S. wanted a large program but the State Department didn't have any inherent capacity to carry out this program when they took it over and the Iraqis were never clear what they wanted, which was apparently much, much smaller," he said.

He added that, as part of the reduction, the State Department shuttered a $108 million Baghdad police complex because of security concerns in the city.

he SIGIR assessment comes on the heels of a series of reports critical of Iraqi development. The U.N. Security Council had expressed concern about political infighting and the human rights record in Iraq. The International Crisis Group, meanwhile, said Iraq, nearly a decade after the U.S.-led invasion, is still troubled by the legacy of Saddam Hussein.

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