OIC Says Iraq Chaos Means U.S. Troops Must Stay
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Ihsanoglu (right) with Azerbaijan's foreign minister in June 2006 (RFE/RL)
February 12, 2007 -- The secretary-general of the Islamic world's largest grouping, Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC), says pulling out U.S. troops from Iraq under the present "catastrophic position" would be a mistake and only lead to more violence.
Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu told Reuters in an interview that a full-blown civil war in Iraq would "open the doors of hell" in the whole Middle East.
"Withdrawal of American troops from Iraq without having a substitute from national forces and international forces would lead to more bloodshed," he said.
Ihsanoglu said blame would not be helpful in finding a solution to Iraq's spiraling violence and political conflict.
He said a unified Iraq with a sovereign government and a democratic constitution should be the main objective.