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Last Updated:  Sunday, 6 April, 2003, 12:46 GMT 13:46 UK
Mid-East press on Baghdad battle

Sunday's papers in the Middle East speak of a "river of blood" as coalition forces move in on Baghdad, but voice the hope that greater bloodshed can still be averted.

Two papers offer contrasting views on the strength of Iraq's resistance. And while some of them openly criticise Saddam's "illegitimate regime", they remain united in a show of solidarity with the Iraqi people in their fight against the "aggressor".


The war has now entered the streets of Baghdad, harvesting the dead and the injured in their hundreds. It is a crematorium in every meaning of that word... Let's hope the river of blood which we are witnessing will not become longer and that there will be a chance to stop the military operations before things turn into a real disaster.

Ukaz - Saudi Arabia


It has become clear that 17 days after the war began, the forces of aggression are in crisis and are facing very difficult times from the Iraqi resistance... The death toll of the US and the British soldiers is increasing by the day.

Al-Akhbar - Egypt


American forces may have won the battle to take control of Saddam International Airport, but they have surely lost a more important battle in their propaganda war when President Saddam Hussein appeared for walkabout in a suburb of Baghdad and was accorded a big welcome by Iraqis... The appearance of the Iraqi president has once again dealt a severe blow to the American propaganda war.

Al-Quds Al-Arabi - London


The distance that the people of Iraq feel between themselves and the state is the biggest impediment to the transformation of Baghdad into another Stalingrad. This is in circumstances in which Iraq's armed forces have not so far demonstrated any serious motivation to defend the capital inch by inch and street by street either, so that Baghdad has come to resemble a defenceless city in the face of the invaders.

Yas-e Now - Iran


If the US eventually takes Baghdad and sends it a governor-general, we will witness many things that would bother Turkey. Iraqi oil, which has been transported through Turkey to date, will be diverted to Israel's Mediterranean ports. They will at least do that. Besides, we will certainly be neighbours with Israel by means of a puppet state to be founded in northern Iraq.

Vakit - Turkey


For obvious reasons, no-one will demand of Iraqis that they defeat the USA and the British militarily, but it will be an enormous achievement if they make their victory difficult.

Al-Jamahiriyah - Libya


The majority of the Iraqi people... are now caught between the hammer of the Anglo-American forces... and the anvil of Saddam and his regime.

Al-Watan - Saudi Arabia


The war crimes being committed in Iraq reflect a clear example of the logic that now pervades the White House and the views held by the neo-conservative gang that surrounds President Bush. This is a gang whose members are symbols of racism and extremism.

Al-Thawrah - Syria


We are a Muslim nation and the onus is on us to confront the aggression of the fourth war in unison and through unity of purpose and to overcome the past. We should not listen to those who have sold their religion and their Arabism and are backing the aggression on Iraq secretly and openly.

Al-Arab al-Alamiyah - London


It is true that Saddam's regime is an illegitimate regime and should not be supported, but what is taking place in Iraq now not only concerns Saddam's regime; it is the military occupation of an Islamic country by foreigners and infidels, the killing of thousands of Muslims, the pillaging of Muslims' property and the violation of their honour, insults against the holy sites and, finally, the extension of enemy hegemony over Islamic countries.

Jomhuri-ye Eslami - Iran


BBC Monitoring, based in Caversham in southern England, selects and translates information from radio, television, press, news agencies and the Internet from 150 countries in more than 70 languages.




SEE ALSO:
Regional press on Iraq's future
05 Apr 03  |  Middle East
Imams concerned for Shia holy sites
05 Apr 03  |  Middle East
Saddam speech: Call for 'martyrdom'
05 Apr 03  |  Middle East


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