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Breakfast Thursday, 10 April, 2003, 05:10 GMT 06:10 UK
The dawn of a new era
The statue of Saddam being pulled down by US marines
The statue of Saddam being pulled down by US marines
Following Wednesday's astonishing scenes in Baghdad, Breakfast had the latest developments from the Iraqi capital as the country wakes up to the dawn of a new era.

  • Breakfast heard from our correspondents in Baghdad and Doha; as well as Iraqis living in the UK in a specially extended programme.

    But despite yesterday's celebrations when a statue of Saddam Hussein was torn down by US marines and Iraqi people, there has been some continued fighting throughout the night.

    The United States says the campaign to rid Iraq of Saddam's regime will last for some time.

    American planes have been bombing Saddam's home town of Tikrit and Kurdish forces continue their push for the northern cities of Mosul and Arbil.

    There has been more looting and civil disorder in Basra and Baghdad, and with the Iraqi regime in tatters, efforts will now focus on installing an interim government.

    And most pressing of all in the coming days, will be the ongoing efforts to get aid: food, fresh water and medical supplies to the Iraqi people although aid agencies say it is still too dangerous to provide help.

    The Red Cross says that the situation is chaotic and unpredictable.

    On Breakfast we heard from Mohammed Al Hilli, an Iraqi who's spent most of his life living in Britain - he gave us his reaction to events
    Mohammed Al Hilli
    "Iraqis are celebrating with caution"

    He said:

  • It was an unbelievable feeling, overwhelming and he couldn't believe what had happened.

  • He said he was happy and that it was a day of victory for people who have been oppressed.

  • He added that the joy of celebrations would not be complete until he knew that his family in Iraq were safe.


    Rageh Omaar gave us the latest from Baghdad after yesterday's historical scenes

    The BBC's Rageh Omaar in Baghdad
    "There's a lot of fighting with the 3rd infantry division"

    He said:

    The American marines have taken up positions on the eastern side of the river. Some are still fighting small pockets of resistance. There is fighting at the mosque on the Tigris river where it's believed Saddam is may be hiding.

    The fighting is mainly on the outskirts of the city. It would be dangerous few days - pulling down the statue spoke volumes but there was still looting - there is an enormous amount of work to do as the area is 'stabilised'


    And Paul Adams was at the coalition headquarters in Doha, Qatar

    The BBC's Paul Adams in Doha, Qatar
    "There are still pockets of resistance"

    Paul talked about the Kurdish run areas and the ground they were hoping to take, he said eyes would eventually turn to Tikrit Saddam's powerbase.

    It could be shielding Iraqi fighters loyal to Saddam. The US fourth infantry could have the job of 'sorting out' Tikrit - at the moment they were still in Kuwait and it would take a couple of days to move them.

    He added that the last stage has unfolded much more quickly than expected... officials at Central Command Doha were saying that they were surprised that they had got to this stage as quick as they had, the last four days had been very quick.

    He said Syria had been warned not to get involved and there was some suggestion that Saddam's chemical weapons may have been 'spirited' out into Syria, although the British were not convinced about this.


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