First Published: 2004-04-08

 
Iraqis head to Fallujah with supplies
 

Thousands of Sunni, Shiites backed by cars unite in march to bring food, medical supplies to besieged Fallujah.

 

Middle East Online

Solidarity

BAGHDAD - Thousands of Sunni and Shiite Muslims backed by cars full of food and medical supplies headed on foot Thursday toward the town of Fallujah which has been besieged by US forces.

The protesters answered a call by Muslim groups for a peaceful march to carry supplies to residents of the Sunni town where dozens of Iraqis have been killed since US marines launched an offensive Sunday to wipe out insurgents.

"Our families in Fallujah, remember that our dead go to heaven and theirs to hell," read a banner held by the marchers who had gathered early Thursday at the Um al-Qora mosque in west Baghdad where people donated food, drinks and medicine.

"No Sunnis, no Shiites, yes for Islamic unity. We are Sunni and Shiite brothers and will never sell our country," they chanted.

The marchers carried Iraqi flags as well as portraits of Sunni Palestinian Sheikh Ahmad Yassin, the head of the Hamas movement killed last month by Israel, and Iraqi Shiite cleric Moqtada Sadr, whose forces were fighting the US-led coalition.

"Allahu Akbar," or "God is greatest" sounded from the Um al-Qora mosque as people made the donations.

Sheikh Ahmad Abdel Ghafur al-Samarai, the mosque imam and a member of the Committee of Religious Clerics, said that "Baghdad residents decided to send initially 90 cars with food and medicines to Fallujah families."

"The Iraqi Red Crescent got a permission from the coalition, following negotiations over one day and one night to bring these supplies into the city," he said.

"We want to express solidarity with our brothers who are being bombed by warplanes and tanks. People donated these things, and women even sold their jewelry," he said.

"It is a form of jihad (religious war) which can also come in the form of demonstrations, donations and fighting. The people who are occupied have the right to fight occupation, whatever the means they use," he said.

He called on the US army to stop the operation in the city.

"This only brings hatred and enmity. Americans killed 20 more people than those who are actually carrying arms. They killed the elderly praying at the mosques, as well as women and children. This is indiscriminate killing."

He condemned the mutilation of the bodies of four Americans slain in Fallujah last week in an incident that sparked US outrage, but said US troops "are doing the same by mutilating the residential neighborhoods."

 

Netanyahu faces mounting pressure over holy site

Erdogan holds talks with Gulf leaders on Qatar crisis

Iran gets more involved in Iraq militarily

Two Jordanians killed at Israeli embassy in Amman

600,000 Yemenis expected to contract cholera in 2017

EU warns Turkey economy at risk in Germany row

Saudi crown prince takes temporary charge

Israel strikes Gaza after missile across border

Hezbollah says fight on Syria border ‘nearing end’

Staff of Turkey opposition paper stand trial

Trump aide due in Israel to ease holy site tensions

Tehran’s judiciary chief accuses US of jailing innocent Iranians

Palestinian arrested after attack in Tel Aviv

Maghreb future is tied to resolving Western Sahara conflict

MENA countries particularly vulnerable to climate change

UN-backed Libya PM to meet eastern strongman near Paris

Saudi Arabia and allies insist demands non-negotiable as GCC crisis continues

Arab League accuses Israel of 'playing with fire' at holy site

Erdogan seeks to defuse standoff around Turkey’s Qatar

Syria warplanes strike near Damascus despite ceasefire

US warns Iran over imprisoned Americans

Kuwait protests to Lebanon over Hezbollah training

30 extremists in Sinai operations

Three Palestinians shot dead in Jerusalem

Nearly 360 injured in Turkey by magnitude 6.7 quake

UN says Saudi to blame for deadly Yemen strike on civilians

Police fire tear gas to disperse Morocco protest

Germany reviews arms sales to Turkey

Hezbollah launches Syria border operation

China calls for Gulf crisis talks

Israel bars men under 50 from Jerusalem Old City prayers

Intensifying Jihadist-rebel clashes in Syria's Idlib

Saudi King sets up new state security agency

Rebel ambush kills 28 regime fighters near Damascus

Turkey slams 'dangerous' Cyprus energy plans

Saudi prince 'arrested over leaked abuse videos'

Israel boosts 'security measures' as Al-Aqsa tensions simmer

Kuwait expels Iranian diplomats over 'terror' cell

Germany vows to overhaul Turkey ties as row escalates

Home cooked meals a relief for fighters in Syria's Raqa

US maintains designation of Iran as top 'state sponsor'

US halting support for Syria rebels

30 civilians dead in anti-IS strikes in Syria

Palestinian civilians urge ICC to speed up probe

Turkey PM opts for stability in light cabinet reshuffle