- POSTED: 30 Dec 2013 21:46
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Iraqi police have finished removing the main Sunni anti-government protest camp from a highway west of Baghdad, Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki's spokesman said on Monday.
BAGHDAD: Iraqi police have finished removing the main Sunni anti-government protest camp from a highway west of Baghdad, Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki's spokesman said on Monday.
Ali Mussawi told AFP that military sources confirmed local police and tribes "completed the removal of the tents that were (at) the site, and opened the road that was closed."
This was done "without any losses, after Al-Qaeda and its members escaped from the camp to the city, and they are being pursued now," Mussawi said.
He was repeating an assertion made by Maliki earlier this month that the protest site had become a "headquarters for the leadership of Al-Qaeda."
An AFP journalist in Ramadi meanwhile said that clashes in the area on Monday killed at least one person and wounded 10.
Protests broke out in Sunni-majority areas of Iraq more than a year ago, and have tapped into long-standing grievances of Sunnis, who say they are both marginalised by the government and unfairly targeted with heavy-handed tactics by security forces.