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Maliki Calls For Iraqi Unity

Anti-terror operations in Anbar province on January 9.
Anti-terror operations in Anbar province on January 9.
Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki has called for national unity among Iraqis in the battle against Al-Qaeda.

Speaking at a political rally in Baghdad on January 11, Maliki denied any sectarian motivation behind the military action in Sunni-dominated Anbar Province where Al-Qaeda-linked militants gained control of parts of the cities of Ramadi and Fallujah last week.

Iraqi forces and allied tribal fighters have now retaken control over most of both cities.

Radio Free Iraq correspondents reported calm in Fallujah on January 11.

A local health official in Anbar said on January 11 that fighting in Anbar has killed at least 60 people over the past two weeks.

He said that 43 people were killed in Ramadi and the other 17 were killed in Fallujah since violence erupted in the western province after the December 28 arrest of a Sunni lawmaker sought on terrorism charges and the dismantling of an anti-government Sunni protest camp in Ramadi.

Based on AP and AFP reporting