Frustration with Iraq's Maliki growing

Sept. 4, 2012 at 12:57 PM
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BAGHDAD, Sept. 4 (UPI) -- An Iraqi opposition leader said that despite lingering political and economic issues, his supporters wouldn't let the country "go down the drain."

Iraqi political issues flared in December, after U.S. forces left the country, when Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki accused his vice president of operating a death squad. Various internal and cross-governments have since erupted in post-war Iraq.

Former Prime Minister Iyad Allawi, one of Maliki's main opponents, told Bloomberg News there was a "frightening degree of corruption" in the country that contributed to growing concerns in Iraq.

"I expect the problems and the crisis will further escalate in the coming weeks," he said.

Allawi's opposition Iraqiya slate boycotted the government, complaining Maliki had taken too much control over power in Baghdad.

Kurdish Foreign Affairs Minister Minister Falah Mustafa said in statements on the semiautonomous government's Web site that not much was being done in the country to address a lack of security and basic services.

"We did fight dictatorship for 30 years, myself and others, and we are not going to let go of Iraq or allow it to go down the drain and to be dismembered," added Allawi.

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