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Sunday, March 06, 2005

Iraq's top general says 10,000 insurgents in detention

Space War - AFP: Iraq's top general says 10,000 insurgents in detention

Iraq's military commander said on Sunday that about 10,000 insurgents were now in detention in the country and predicted that Iraqi forces would be able to take control of security in six months.

"We have 10,000 of them in detention," joint chief of staff General Babakir Zebari told AFP without providing details.

According to US military figures, as of early January more than 7,000 detainees were being held in US-run prisons in Iraq including the notorious Abu Ghraib facility in Baghdad and Camp Bucca in the south.

But this number rose as security was stepped up in the runup to the January 30 elections with the arrest of hundreds of suspects throughout the country.

There was little letup, however, in the violence during February which also saw the most deadly insurgent attack in the two years since the US-led invasion toppled Saddam Hussein. On February 28, a suicide car bomber killed 118 people in Hilla, 100 kilometres (60 miles) south of Baghdad.

The Iraqi commander reiterated his optimism that Iraq's forces would be ready in six months to take control from US-led forces.

"Multinational forces will be restricted to their bases outside the city," he said.

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Hard Comment: This Iraqi Commander is making a bold prediction. The last line of this article, ''Multinational Forces will be Restricted to their bases outside the city''... I guess that would be nice to see, or would it?

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