Iraqi police look for three booby trapped cars in Najaf as source says another assassination attempt foiled

Published August 31st, 2003 - 02:00 GMT

Iraqi authorities on Sunday were searching for three cars laden with explosives believed to have entered Najaf, Iraqi police said. "We received information that three car bombs had entered Najaf and we are searching them," Major Tariq Jamel told AFP


Meanwhile, an official source at the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SCIRI) confirmed to Al Bawaba that a new assassination attempt on the lives of several prominent Iraqi figures was foiled Saturday in Najaf. The source said experts managed to dismantle a booby-trapped car.  


Mohammad al Hariri, a member of the SCIRI central committee, told Al Bawaba via telephone from his office in Damascus that a booby-trapped car was discovered Saturday in what appears to have been another attempt against the lives of political and religious leaders in the holy city of Najaf. The foiled attempt has come one day after the massive car explosion that resulted in the death of more than 85 people.  


Hariri added, “Once the car was identified, experts rushed and dismantled the explosives and then it was possible to identify those who were involved in the plot.”  


The SCIRI member accused the toppled regime’s loyalists and their collaborators of being behind the attack, “We think that remnants of the overthrown regime and some infiltrators from outside Iraq carried out the attack.”  


“Old and new information confirm that there is a link between radical organizations and Saddam Hussein’s toppled regime. The Al Qaeda network had several training bases in Iraq during Saddam’s regime, and these bases were overseen directly by Qusay Saddam Hussein. The toppled regime maintained such bases to destabilize the situation in the region as well as Iraq’s neighbors. There have been terror attacks in Jordan, in addition to attacks against vital installations in Kuwait, and the assassination attempts against the Emir of Kuwait and the former US president George Bush Senior, all of which have been done under directions from the head of the toppled regime,” added Hariri.  


Hariri explained, “There has never been any infighting or any form of violence amongst the Shiite clerics. Any competition between clerics would be over intellectual and religious matters, which has always been debated.” ( 

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