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Muqtada Sadr

WORLD
August 18, 2009 | Liz Sly
In January, a video began circulating on cellphones in Baghdad showing men dancing provocatively with one another at a party. At the time, many Iraqis considered the video a sign of how much life in Iraq had normalized, an indication of new freedoms. But activists and some gays in Baghdad say the video instead served as a trigger for a systematic campaign of persecution and killings of gays by Iraqi security forces and Shiite militias. The Iraqi LGBT, a London-based group that supports lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgenders in Iraq, says it has documented 87 killings in Iraq so far this year related to anti-gay sentiments, including six in the last two weeks.
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WORLD
May 24, 2004 | Monte Morin, Times Staff Writer
A car bomb and rocket grenade attack killed two U.S. soldiers and injured five others as their convoy rumbled past the city of Fallouja on Sunday, the first such deadly attack since U.S. Marines ended 3 1/2 weeks of siege there late last month. To the southeast, U.S. helicopters, planes and ground troops hammered insurgents in the holy cities of Kufa and Najaf, killing more than 60 religious militia fighters and civilians, according to the U.S. military and local hospitals.
WORLD
August 31, 2007 | Carol J. Williams, Times Staff Writer
Aides to radical Shiite cleric Muqtada Sadr on Thursday appeared to place conditions on his call for a six-month halt to his militia's operations, but the Iraqi capital was noticeably calm a day after the announced stand-down. The U.S. military, meanwhile, reported the deaths of two soldiers in combat operations, one in west Baghdad on Thursday and the other in restive Diyala province the previous day. Their deaths brought to 3,735 the number of U.S.
OPINION
October 22, 2006
Your Oct. 19 editorial, "Eyeing the exits," states that Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Maliki "needs to keep Muqtada Sadr happy." Why are our soldiers dying daily to support a government that placates Sadr? After all, wasn't Sadr the cleric who had his insurgents fight our soldiers in graveyards near Fallouja earlier in the war? We need to pull out now and let Maliki deal with his own civil war. THEODORA BELTSON Beverly Hills Members of the Bush administration like to use black-and-white slogans, simplifying complex issues and implying there is no other option except to "stay the course" in Iraq.
WORLD
October 10, 2004 | Thomas S. Mulligan, Times Staff Writer
Followers of radical Shiite Muslim cleric Muqtada Sadr said they reached a cease-fire agreement Saturday with the interim Iraqi government, but a government spokesman said the only proof of a deal would be if the rebels started handing over their weapons Monday. A cease-fire would be a breakthrough in the government's redoubled efforts to pacify insurgent strongholds ahead of national elections scheduled for January. Sadr's Al Mahdi militia has fought U.S.
WORLD
June 16, 2008 | Ned Parker and Raheem Salman, Times Staff Writers
Members of Shiite Muslim cleric Muqtada Sadr's political bloc announced Sunday that the group would not compete as a party in coming local elections but would endorse candidates. The decision appeared aimed at allowing the Sadr movement to play a role in the Iraqi elections despite a government threat to bar the bloc from fielding candidates if it did not first dissolve its militia.
WORLD
June 8, 2008 | Ned Parker, Times Staff Writer
Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Maliki traveled Saturday to Iran on a mission to improve relations between the countries at a time when U.S. officials have accused Tehran of arming Shiite Muslim militia groups fighting the Americans and Iraqi security forces. Maliki, who was expected to meet with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad today, is on his third visit to Iran since taking office in May 2006. His trip comes after fighting this spring in Baghdad and the southern city of Basra pitted Iraqi security forces against the Mahdi Army militia loyal to radical Shiite cleric Muqtada Sadr.
WORLD
May 26, 2008 | Alexandra Zavis, Times Staff Writer
The U.S. military said Sunday that the number of attacks by militants in the last week dropped to a level not seen in Iraq since March 2004. About 300 violent incidents were recorded in the seven-day period that ended Friday, down from a weekly high of nearly 1,600 in mid-June last year, according to a chart provided by the military. The announcement appeared aimed at allaying fears that an uprising by militiamen loyal to radical Shiite Muslim cleric Muqtada Sadr could unravel security gains since 28,500 additional American troops were deployed in Iraq in a buildup that reached its height in June.
WORLD
June 14, 2008 | Ashraf Khalil, Times Staff Writer
Shiite Muslim cleric Muqtada Sadr appeared to move Friday toward reorganizing his Mahdi Army militia and shifting much of the movement's focus toward peaceful social activities, though he said its military wing would reserve the right to attack U.S. forces. Sadr, in a statement read after Friday prayers in his stronghold of Kufa, said a select number of Mahdi Army cadres would be allowed to bear arms and use them only with authorization. His orders, read by a deputy, said the militia's guns and mortars "will be directed only toward the occupiers and no one else.
OPINION
June 15, 2004
Bosnia, long gone from news reports, garnered some recent coverage when a government commission finally acknowledged that the Serb army had committed the worst massacre in Europe since World War II. Bosnian Serb officials had ignored facts, mass graves and witnesses for years in denying involvement in the killing of as many as 8,000 men and boys in the Muslim town of Srebrenica nine years ago. The commission issued its report last week and Monday led forensic experts to a mass grave.
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