Tag "SOFA"

Iranian Parliament Speaker Larijani warns Iraq against US SOFA

Press TV reports that Iran’s Majlis (parliament) speaker says an Iraq-US security pact would have dire consequences for the Iraqi nation and regional states. Under the proposed security agreement, American troops will be able to legally stay in Iraq for three more years after a UN mandate allowing their military presence on Iraqi soil expires on December 31. The Iraqi parliament is scheduled to vote on the controversial treaty on

Sunni bloc may boycott vote on US pact

Press TV reports: The main Sunni-Arab bloc in the Iraqi Parliament threatens to boycott a parliament session to vote on the Iraq-US security agreement. “The IAF would not enter the parliament if there was no popular referendum over the agreement or assurances from the US side,” Abdelkareem al-Samarraie, a leading lawmaker from the Iraqi Accord Front (IAF), told the Voices of Iraq on Tuesday. The lawmaker said parliament should postpone

Hezbollah Condemns US-Iraq Pact, Calls to Reject It

Al-Manar TV reports that while the Iraqi parliament was likely to approve a “suspicious” pact with the US occupation forces allowing them to stay in the country for another three years, Hezbollah finally broke its silence on Thursday and denounced the pact as harmful and called on all Iraqi MPs to assume their responsibilities and reject it as soon as possible. In a statement it released, Hezbollah emphasized that the

Unofficial Translation of US SOFA from the Arabic Text

By McClatchy Newspapers An Agreement between the Republic of Iraq and the United States of America regarding the Withdrawal of the American Forces from Iraq and Regulating their Activities During their Temporary Presence in it PREFACE The United States of America and the Republic of Iraq – which will hereafter be referred to as the two parties – recognize the importance of strengthening their joint security and participating in global

So what’s the deal with the US SOFA in Iraq?

First, let me point you to some other analyses about the SOFA: Juan Cole,Robert Dreyfuss, Stratfor and Pepe Escobar. Reading through these analyses I amazed that nobody seems to be very concerned about the fact that the final text has still not been leaked. It will, probably before the end of the week, but for the time being everybody is commenting mostly on the basis of what can only be

Breaking News: Iraqi Cabinet endorses US SOFA

According to the BBC, the Iraqi Cabinet has endorsed the US SOFA which includes the following elements: placing US forces in Iraq under the authority of the Iraqi government US forces to leave the streets of Iraq’s towns and villages by the middle of 2009 US forces to hand over their bases to Iraq during the course of 2009 US forces to lose the authority to raid Iraqi homes without

The President of Iraq’s Kurdistan local government threatens a ‘civil war’ if SOFA not signed

Press TV reports: The President of Iraq’s Kurdistan local government has warned of a ‘civil war’ if Baghdad refuses to sign a security agreement with the US. “If the pact is not signed, the situation in the country may deteriorate to the point of a civil war,” Voices of Iraq news agency quoted Masoud Barzani as saying at a press conference on Wednesday. Barzani had earlier said his region will

Understanding the SOFA

by Ya Baqiyatullah Five years after the invasion of Iraq by the Allied Forces, the people of Iraq find themselves at a crossroad; to accept the SOFA and legalize an occupation or reject it and live indefinitely under the shadows of the US forces. The Iraqi people, after being promised so much in the name of liberation are now left in a dilemma in which either choice will adds to

More fallout from the botched US raid on Syrian village

The shit is hitting the fan after the botched US raid on the Syrian village near the Iraqi border and even nominal US allies such as the Maliki government and even Fouad Siniora (!!) in Lebanon are condemning this aggression. Other protesting voices include Qatar, the OIC, the Arab League, Russia and China. Even the otherwise ‘tame and lame’ EU “voiced concerns” about this raid (which just goes to show

US raid on Syria ‘will hamper SOFA’

Exactly as I predicted: Press TV reports that An Iraqi lawmaker has warned that Sunday’s attack on Syria would negatively affect a security pact the US is insisting to sign with Iraq. “The air strike will send a negative message to Iraq’s neighbors,” MP Abbass al-Bayati told Voices of Iraq news agency on Tuesday. US commandoes onboard four helicopters attacked a Syrian border region on Sunday, killing at least eight

Iraqi cleric issues decree against SOFA

Press TV reports: A senior Shia cleric has issued a religious decree prohibiting Iraqis from signing a controversial security agreement with the US. Grand Ayatollah Seyyed Kazem al-Husseini al-Haeri issued a fatwa (decree) against the US-proposed Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA). The cleric said that the agreement was in violation of the Islamic law, calling it a humiliating pact that would undermine Iraq’s sovereignty. The US Joint Chiefs of Staff,

Iraqi Shias organize a massive demonstration against the proposed US SOFA

Al-Manar reports: Muslim Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr urged Iraqi lawmakers on Saturday to reject a planned US-Iraqi security deal as tens of thousands of his followers poured on to the streets of Baghdad in a massive anti-American protest. “When the agreement is in your hands, the destiny of Iraq and its people is also in your hands,” Sadr said in a statement, speaking to MPs, whose approval is necessary once

US-Iraqi agreement: leaked

from Raed Jarrar’s blog via Palestinian Pundit: I read about a leaked copy of the US-Iraqi agreement a few days ago when a radio station in Iraq mentioned some of its details, then it was mentioned in some Arab newspapers like Al-Qabas and Al-Sharq Al-Awsat. A couple of days ago, one Iraqi website (linked to an Iraqi armed resistance group) published the leaked draft on their web page for less

The US SOFA in Iraq – showdown bewteen the USraelien Empire and the Shias

First, please take a look at this al-Jazeera report: First, a superficial impression: the contrast between the dignified attitude of Salah al-Obeidi (the Sadrist spokesman) and the petty bickering of the two other participants of this show. Second, listening to this conversation I think that one can only come to one objective conclusion: the only real patriots are the Sadrists. The Kurds are clearly sold to the Americans. Considering how

Maliki: US-Iraq Security Deal Fails

Alalam News reports: Iraq’s Premier Nuri al-Maliki said on Friday that negotiations with the US on a security agreement that extends US presence in the war-torn country beyond 2008 has reached a “dead end.” Maliki said that the talks have failed because of US demands that infringe Iraq’s sovereignty. During a visit to neighboring Jordan, Maliki told journalists: “We have reached a dead end, because when we started the talks,

US policy in Iraq: a train wreck in slow motion

Real News Network has recenlty began showing better and better reports about the Middle-East (Pepe Escobar’s analyses are particularly interesting). Take a look at these two: These two reports make one thing absolutely clear: there is no way in hell the USA is going to get its wish in Iraq. More importantly, if the USA persists in pushing al-Maliki to sign the US SOFA it will totally discredit him and

A majority of Iraqi parliamentarians reject US SOFA and write to Congress

Press TV reports: Iraqi MPs adamant against US pact: The Iraqi Parliament wants US forces out of Iraq. The majority of Iraqi parliamentarians have written to the US Congress rejecting a long-term security deal, if US forces don’t leave Iraq. New York Times reported that Rep. William Delahunt, a Democrat from Massachusetts, released excerpts from a letter he was handed by Iraqi parliamentarians laying down conditions for the security pact

US issues threat to Iraq’s $50bn foreign reserves in military deal

By Patrick Cockburn for The Independent The US is holding hostage some $50bn (£25bn) of Iraq’s money in the Federal Reserve Bank of New York to pressure the Iraqi government into signing an agreement seen by many Iraqis as prolonging the US occupation indefinitely, according to information leaked to The Independent. US negotiators are using the existence of $20bn in outstanding court judgments against Iraq in the US, to pressure

Senior Iranian Cleric: US plan for Iraq ‘impractical’

Press TV reports: A senior Iranian cleric says the US should withdraw its troops from Iraq if Washington seeks to survive the quagmire in the country. The military agreement that the White House wants the Iraqi government to sign is ‘impractical’, said Tehran’s interim Friday prayers leader Ayatollah Ahmad Jannati with regards to the Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA) drawn up by Washington. The US echelons are currently negotiating with

Maliki summoned to Tehran

Press TV reports that Maliki will travel to Tehran this Sunday for the discussion of “a further expansion bilateral ties” and that he will meet with both President Ahmadinejad and, more importantly, Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei. So what are they going to discuss? Opening an Iraqi chamber of commerce in Tabriz or maybe expanding cultural ties? Hardly. There is no doubt in my mind at all that what will really