Iraq council threatens to take legal action against Arab satellite channels
An informed Iraqi source disclosed that the interim governing council might start legal proceedings against several Arab satellite channels that broadcast pre-recorded videotaped messages of groups identifying themselves as ‘resistance cells’.
A spokesman for the Iraqi National Congress (INC) accused Arab satellite channels that have previously aired videotaped messages of Iraqi groups claiming they represent ‘cells resisting the [US] occupation’ of implementing a “preplanned project”. He also stressed that the newly formed interim governing council is currently mulling legal action against them to limit their activity within Iraq.
The congress’ spokesman, Haidar al Moussaui, told Al Bawaba in a telephone conversation that these channels are playing a ‘dirty game’ and are fully aware of its dimensions. “The rage these channels are causing has gone beyond the Iraqi public and has now reached the governing council, which is currently looking at ways on how to deal with the issue…and take the necessary action against them. This is due to the fact that the country’s circumstances cannot tolerate more incitement and hatred amongst the Iraqi people,” added Moussaui.
The spokesman also questioned the type of [journalistic] scoops these channels seek by showing images of five or six people sitting in a room with a picture of the deposed Iraqi president Saddam Hussein hung on a wall behind them. He also questioned the motives behind these channels, which seem [to him] to actually be propagating the emergence of an organization whose slogan is to kill Iraqis [who cooperate with Americans].
The spokesman, whose party is headed by governing council member, Ahmad Chalabi, said, “What these channels are doing is not pure media [activity] but rather an implementation of a pre-planned project. “I would like to affirm to you that the Iraqi people will not allow such a ‘plan’ to continue,” he told Al Bawaba. He added, “these channels give no consideration to the feelings of the Iraqi people who have just emerged from a critical situation nor do they care for the country’s current circumstances.”
It is noteworthy to mention that many groups have appeared on Arabic channels over the past few weeks claiming responsibility for attacks on American and British forces and targets in Iraq.
On Monday, Al Jazeera’s satellite transmission aired a recorded videotaped message in which 10 people, carrying rifles and wearing white clothes and scarves covering their faces, appeared with an unclear photo of Saddam Hussein in the background. One of the men, who claimed to be the spokesman of a [new] group called ‘Jihad Cells’ – has threatened to kill what he described as any Iraqi spy or any Arab or foreign soldier in Iraq, including Americans. He also claimed that his group wants to liberate Iraq and will use guerilla warfare to achieve that if necessary.
Earlier on Monday, a masked man in Iraq appeared on Abu Dhabi Television’s satellite transmission claiming to know everything about the resistance and their operations – somthing that has now become very prevalent and widespread in Iraq.
The man who was standing in the middle of the group of 10 men (in the tape that was carried on Al Jazeera Monday) - most of whom were carrying rifles - said his group carry out their attacks in the name of God and has no ties with the toppled regime [of Saddam Hussein] that has caused harm to everyone in Iraq [in the past]. He added, “If the US possesses tanks and airplanes, the Iraqi resistance have a stronger weapon which is help from God.”
On a different note, the INC’s spokesman expected the internal regulations of the newly formed governing council be finalized within the next few days – a step that is required prior to elections for a chief [for the council] and the much anticipated formation of an Iraqi government.
“We expect the regulations be completed within the next few days and perhaps this week or early next week at the latest,” Moussaui told Al Bawaba. He added, “based on these regulations, a head for the council will be selected and the cabinet will be formed.”