[QODLink]
Archive
British forces kill two in Basra
British occupation forces killed two Shia fighters in the southern city of Basra on Thursday, a British military spokeswoman has said.
Last Modified: 05 Aug 2004 17:36 GMT
There have been sporadic outbreaks of violence in Basra
British occupation forces killed two Shia fighters in the southern city of Basra on Thursday, a British military spokeswoman has said.

"Coalition forces were attacked with small arms fire and returned fire, killing two enemy fighters," she said, adding that no British forces were wounded.

The fighting, which lasted about 15 minutes, took place in Iraq's second-largest city, which has seen occasional outbreaks of violence over the past 15 months.

Earlier in the day, fighters loyal to Shia leader Muqtada al-Sadr declared holy war against British forces based in Basra after four of their comrades were arrested.

Sheikh Saad al-Basri, al-Sadr's representative in the overwhelmingly Shia city said: "We will wage jihad and war against the foreign troops, not against police and Iraqi forces."

'State of crisis'

"However, if they (the Iraqi personnel) fight on the side of the occupiers, we will strike them harshly."

"We will wage jihad and war against the foreign troops, not against police and Iraqi forces"

Sheikh Saad al-Basri,
Muqtada
al-Sadr's representative in Basra

Basri accused British forces of arresting four al-Sadr supporters in order to "create in Basra, the state of crisis that exists in Najaf".

An AFP photographer saw British troops deployed in armoured vehicles and tanks around al-Sadr's main offices and elsewhere in the city.

Police chief General Muhammad Kazem al-Ali said officials at al-Sadr's office had rejected his attempts to defuse the tension through negotiations.

Mortar rounds

Meanwhile, in Amara, north of Basra, a number of mortar rounds were fired at a British position in the city but there were no casualties, a British spokeswoman said.

Basra deputy governor Salam Audeh, who represents al-Sadr on a provincial council, accused foreign troops of reneging on a June truce that ended al-Sadr's uprising earlier this year.

The British military also confirmed that two projectiles were fired at a multinational base camp in Sibah, south of Basra on the Kuwaiti border. One hit the camp and the other fell short.

Neither caused any casualties, it said.

Source:
AFP
Topics in this article
People
City
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
'Justice for All' demonstrations swell across the US over the deaths of African Americans in police encounters.
Six former Guantanamo detainees are now free in Uruguay with some hailing the decision to grant them asylum.
Disproportionately high number of Aboriginal people in prison highlights inequality and marginalisation, critics say.
Nearly half of Canadians have suffered inappropriate advances on the job - and the political arena is no exception.
Featured
Women's rights activists are demanding change after Hanna Lalango, 16, was gang-raped on a bus and left for dead.
Buried in Sweden's northern forest, Sorsele has welcomed many unaccompanied kids who help stabilise a town exodus.
A look at the changing face of North Korea, three years after the death of 'Dear Leader'.
While some fear a Muslim backlash after café killings, solidarity instead appears to be the order of the day.
Victims spared by the deadly disease are reporting blindness and other unexpected post-Ebola health issues.