12 Aug '11, 2am

Iraq treads carefully with Syria unrest

BAGHDAD: Iraq is treading carefully in its response to Syria's deadly crackdown on protesters, balancing its ties to Iran, which backs Damascus, and international condemnation of Syria, officials and analysts say. Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's crackdown on protesters, in which rights groups say more than 2,000 people have been killed since March, has drawn widespread international condemnation, including from several Arab states, the United States, the European Union and the United Nations. But while Iraqi Speaker of Parliament Osama al-Nujaifi on Tuesday demanded "that the Syrian government stop the bloodshed" and condemned violence there, the Iraqi government has not taken a strong official stance on the violence in Syria. Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki made a general call in late May for Syria to enact reforms, but did not give specific proposals nor call for the vi...

Full article: http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/afp_world/view/114...

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