Iraq Promises to Search More Planes for Weapons

Previous Random Searches Didn't Turn Up Anything

by Jason Ditz, March 29, 2013

In hopes of placating the Obama Administration, Iraq has announced that it will increase the number of aircraft it forces to land in Iraqi territory for random weapons searches.

The announcement follows weekend demands from Secretary of State John Kerry that Iraq ban all overflights coming out of neighboring Iran, amid allegations that some of them might be carrying arms to Syria.

The allegations are long-standing from the US, and prompted Iraq to institute random searches before, though they never found anything on any of the civilian aircraft they searched.

That total lack of evidence hasn’t changed the Obama Administration’s position, with officials continuing to reiterate the claim that Iran is sending arms illegally and that Iraq, by not stopping them, is partly responsible. Iraq has tried to keep a neutral position in the Syrian Civil War, but this has become increasingly difficult with Syrian rebels closely linked to al-Qaeda in Iraq (AQI) and launching attacks inside Iraq as well.

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