Iraqi doctors, meanwhile, are deeply concerned about the humanitarian catastrophe in Fallujah
US troops continue the large-scale anti-terrorist operation in the Iraqi city of Fallujah. The Iraqi flag was hoisted above the building of the police administration yesterday to symbolize the taking of the central area of the town. Coalition troops control 70 percent of the town, including the key stronghold of the extremists, the Al-Julan area. The major goal of the operation is to destroy the Iraqi division of Al-Qaeda, although it seems now that the US troops will not succeed. According to intelligence sources, rebel leader Abu Mussab al-Zarkawi and his close associates had left the town prior to the start of the operation. Ten American and two Iraqi soldiers were killed in the clashes of the embattled city.
Gunmen seized 20 members of the Iraqi National Guard yesterday. The video footage shows masked men yielding guns and grenade launchers, aiming the weapons at a group of men wearing the National Guard uniform. The captives were filmed sitting with their backs to the camera. Qatar-based TV company Al-Jazeera aired the videotape on Wednesday.
Military men found “slaughter houses” in the northern area of Fallujah on Wednesday, where gunmen executed hostages. Numerous CDs with captives' files and video tapes showing hostages being killed were found in the houses. Militants' black clothes – hooded black overalls as seen in their videos – were found there too.
Iraqi doctors, meanwhile, are deeply concerned about the humanitarian catastrophe in Fallujah. Spokespeople for the Red Crescent Society said that a lot of people were dying due to insufficient medical aid. Medical specialists are certain that the catastrophe will threaten other cities, if authorities do not take urgent measures to stop it. There are no medicines, no water or electricity in the city. People are in dire need of medical aid. “We asked Americans to let us enter the city and help those people, but we received no answer from them,” a spokesperson for the society said.
Neither US military men, nor Iraqi authorities have any information about the number of civilians staying in Fallujah. It is only believed that about 50 percent of the local population has fled from the occupied city. Spokespeople for the American coalition promised to minimize casualties, although they added that it would be hard or even impossible to do under wartime conditions.
The US administration intends to reconstruct the ruined city in the future. Ninety million dollars will be reportedly assigned for the purpose. US State Department spokesman Richard Boucher said that the American government considered the funding of 99 various projections. First priority will be paid to road building, water and power supplies.