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Last Updated:  Thursday, 10 April, 2003, 09:13 GMT 10:13 UK
Baghdad fall shocks Arab press

Newpapers throughout the Arabic-speaking world reacted with a mixture of amazement, concern and delight on Thursday to the sudden fall of central Baghdad to US military forces.

"Momentous", "inexplicable" and "loathsome" were among the comments, as were "good news" and "rejoice".


We do not believe that the presence of the American forces in Baghdad will be tranquil and without dangers, despite the surprising and inexplicable collapse of the city's defenders.

Al-Quds Al-Arabi - London


With the fall of the central government in the Iraqi capital and the repeated images of looting... it would be right to say that it is the responsibility of the coalition forces to bring about security in all the towns and villages they control. This responsibility cannot be postponed.

Al-Sharq al-Awsat - London


This loathsome war against Iraq is a war in which more bombs and weapons of destruction have been used than before in the history of mankind. It is a war against the Arabs. It is first a war against Arab honour and second a war to change the geographical map of the Arab nation.

Al-Arab al-Alamiyah - London


It is wrong for the US to use its military muscle and hardware, which was designed for its counterparts in military power, against a small country like Iraq.

Al-Quds - Palestinian


The aggression against Iraq is a violation of international legitimacy and a serious threat to Arab national security.

Al-Thawrah - Syria


What is happening in Baghdad now, including looting and rejoicing at the fall of Saddam's regime, is an indication of what will happen in the coming days and months.

Al-Riyadh - Saudi Arabia


Finally, it is good news... The regime and its men disappeared from the scene, and we are awaiting the final announcement of the outcome and future strategies aimed at mitigating the tension in the region... It is not possible to bet on the survival of a regime that has done nothing for its people in order for them to remain steadfast to its course.

Al-Watan - Saudi Arabia


The hidden agenda of the aggressors against Iraq - as well as the deception of the world community with empty slogans calling for the liberation of Iraq, the dissemination of democracy and subsequent reconstruction - has begun to unravel.

Al-Wafd - Egypt


Can the destruction of Saddam Hussein's statue... give international legitimacy to a war whose beginning was not clean? Yes, we Arabs deserve what is happening to us... but this is too much for us.

Al-Jamahiriyah - Libya


Baghdad fell yesterday to the hands of the new Tartars just as it fell to Hulaku [Khan] in 1258 [AD]. This momentous event will have great ramifications for the whole region. Free people should not go to sleep while there is inequity or accept occupation.

Al-Watan - Oman


Now that the former regime has collapsed and a new chapter opened, the future of Iraq is in the hands of Iraqis and not others. They must forget the past and look to the future in the spirit of harmony, tolerance and by strengthening national unity.

Al-Ittihad - UAE


The USA has declared war on Islam. The USA has perpetrated the worst terrorist crimes against Muslims in Iraq and Palestine.

Al-Watan - Qatar


We tell the Iraqi people: Rejoice after Saddam Hussein is gone, despite the fact that we know very well, and they know as well, that from now on they will be under a US wing that is ever in the ascendant.

El Khabar -Algeria


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.




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