Iraqi Premier Gives Sobering Account of Insurgency

In his first speech before the interim national assembly here, Prime Minister Ayad Allawi gave a sobering account today of the threat posed by the insurgency, saying the country’s instability is a “source of worry for many people” and that the guerrillas represent “a challenge to our will.”Dr. Allawi, who has tried hard to cast himself as a tough and confident leader since taking office in late June, asserted that general elections would go ahead in January as planned, but acknowledged that there were significant obstacles standing in the way of security and reconstruction. The nascent police force is underequipped and lacks the respect needed from the public to quell the insurgency, he said, and foreign businessmen have told him they fear investing in Iraq because of the rampant violence here.Full Story

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