Aug 30 2013
Azzaman, August 30, 2013
Iraq has more than one million soldiers but still they are finding it extremely hard to reinstate law and order.
Deadly bomb attacks blamed on a resurgence of al-Qaeda killed more than 1,000 Iraqis in July and August has seen some of the deadliest attacks in many years.
Adel Abdul Mahdi from the powerful Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq put the number of Iraq’s armed forces at “1.2 million,” the largest volunteer force in the Middle East.
There is no conscription in Iraq and despite the surge in violence and attacks targeting Iraqi armed forces, there has never been a shortage of recruits.
But Mahdi put the number of “terrorists at not more than 7,000.”
The Islamic Supreme Council of which Mahdi is one of its leaders is a faction to reckon with, particularly among the country’s majority, the Shiites.
It has its own militias and is part of Prime Minister Noori al-Maliki’s coalition government.
Previously based in Iran, the council spearheaded armed opposition to former leader Saddam Hussein.
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