Saturday, May 26, 2007

Good News from iraq: 26 May 2007

From MNF-I, Al-Anbar rejection of al-Qaeda creates economic, political opportunities.

“The Al-Anbar province is in transition,” said [U.S.Marine Corps Brig. Gen. John] Allen. “The recent improvement in the security situation across the province has created significant political and economic opportunities.”

Recently, Al-Anbar citizens have made several big steps engaging al-Qaeda in the province and have grown politically and economically closer with the Iraqi central government.

“There are dramatic changes in Al-Anbar,” said Allen. . . .

“The security improvements have been brought about by a groundswell of opposition to al-Qaeda, represented in the fact that just in a year, the police forces in Al-Anbar have grown from about 2,000 to 14,500,” he added.

As tribal and elder leaders in Al-Anbar province offer their sons to combat terrorism through the Iraqi Army or Iraqi Police, Coalition forces are optimistic about the overall situation in the province.

“A partnership exists today in Al-Anbar province between Coalition forces, the Iraqi Police and Iraqi Army,” said Allen. “By and large, al-Qaeda has been expelled out of the population centers.”

As efforts in security progress, the economy in Al-Anbar province is expected to pick up.

“In 2006, we finished more than 160 projects all over the province,” said [Al-Anbar province governor Mamoun Sami Rashid] Al-Awani. . . .