al-Sadr Official Says Staged Bombings Aimed at Starting Ethnic War
London Telegraph | September 23 2005
|Abdel Hadi al-Daraji, Moqtada al-Sadr's top official in the sprawling Sadr City slums of Baghdad, told The Daily Telegraph that Britain was plotting to start an ethnic war by carrying out mass-casualty bombings targeting Shia civilians and then blaming the attacks on Sunni Arab groups.
"Everyone knows the occupiers' agenda," insisted Mr Daraji, who is currently the only Mahdi army official authorised to speak directly on Sadr's behalf.
"They are in bed with Mossad [the Israeli intelligence service] and their intention is to keep Iraq an unstable battlefield so they can exploit their interests in Iraq." But Mr Daraji insisted that Sadr was not going to call for a Shia uprising in Basra, where he enjoys only a limited, if growing, following in the city's slums.
"We have to take the moral high ground and resist this provocation by the British," he said.
"This is a very dangerous, very sensitive time in Iraq but we must calm our supporters or we will fall into the British trap."
According to The Telegraph, Sadr has been keen to cultivate a degree of legitimacy since he agreed to join the political process last year