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Iraqi Lawmakers Concerned By Uptick In Violence

At least 70 people were killed in blast at the Mraidi market in Baghdad on June 25
BAGHDAD -- Iraqi politicians are blaming the recent spike in violence in the country to a combination of factors including complacency, funding shortages for security, and political in-fighting, RFE/RL's Radio Free Iraq reports.

Legislator Ghofran al-Saadi of the Sadrist bloc told RFE/RL that "a state of emergency should be declared" to enable security forces to regain control in the country.

Rashid al-Azzawi, a lawmaker with the Sunni Accordance Front bloc, said the seemingly improved security climate of recent months had "lulled Iraqi forces into complacency and a false sense of triumphalism."

He said he had personally seen Iraqi security personnel "nonchalantly waving vehicles" through checkpoints, "without even bothering to look at the passengers."

Haider al-Ibadi, a lawmaker with the Shi'ite United Iraqi Alliance and an official with the Islamic Dawa Party, told RFE/RL that funding for security was "being slashed" and that National Security Minister Sharwan al-Waeli had told him that his ministry ran out of funds in May.

U.S. forces are scheduled to withdraw from Iraqi cities by June 30, while some have expressed concerns that Iraqi forces are not prepared to ensure security.