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At Maliki rally, desperate Iraqis plead for help

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NNN0LHI Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-09 06:24 AM
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At Maliki rally, desperate Iraqis plead for help
http://www.khaleejtimes.ae/DisplayArticle08.asp?xfile=d...

(Reuters)

24 January 2009

BASRA, Iraq - When Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki came to Basra to whip up votes for an upcoming election, it felt more like a giant cry for help from the southern oil city's desperate poor than a campaign rally.

About half the 2,000-strong crowd, some on crutches or in wheelchairs, surged against a human barrier of security men in a bid to make their pleas for assistance heard as Maliki concluded a speech, praising security gains and promising development.

"She's blind and has a mental problem, I went to Baghdad and got no help, we have nowhere left to turn to," said Abu Zahra, thrusting his daughter forward.

Maliki did not address the pleas personally, but sent his security guards to collect armfuls of files with letters begging for help, some with gory photos of injuries.
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