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Basra Bombings Indicate Iraqi Violence Spreading

Annan Fears Basra Bombings Indicate Iraqi Violence Is Spreading

Having announced previously that the return of the United Nations to Iraq depends on the country’s security and stability, Secretary-General Kofi Annan said he was concerned that today’s deadly car bombings in Basra were an indication that violence was spreading.

Speaking to reporters upon arriving at UN Headquarters in New York today, Mr. Annan said news of the bombings in the southern city of Basra – scores are reported killed there after at least three separate bombings – were “not comforting” for the UN as it considers returning to Iraq.

“We have all been anxious to see the attempts to reduce violence succeed, [and] not for it to spread,” Mr. Annan said. “And of course the security situation on the ground has a very important impact on our decisions and our activities.”

He added that “for the meantime we will continue to operate the way we have been doing – very carefully – and monitor developments.”

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