View Full Version : Iraqi Minister Lashes Out At Saudi Arabia

10-02-2005, 09:08 PM
Iraqi minister lashes out at Saudi Arabia


Sun Oct 2,11:09 AM ET

AMMAN (AFP) - Iraq's interior minister delivered a scathing attack on neighbouring Saudi Arabia, saying his country would not be lectured by "a bedouin on a camel" about human rights and democracy.

"We do not accept a bedouin on a camel teaching us about human rights and democracy. In Iraq, we are proud of our civilisation," Bayan Baqer Sulagh told a press conference in Amman after talks on boosting border security.

The Shiite minister said the oil-rich Sunni-ruled kingdom had several problems of its own to take care of.

"Saudis should first allow women to drive, as is the case in Iraq," he said Sunday, adding that "four million Shiites live like second-class citizens in the Saudi kingdom."

He was responding to Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Saud al-Faisal's accusations that Iran was seeking to spread its influence in Iraq and that sectarian divisions were threatening to break up the country.

Prince Saud said last month that splitting Iraq into Shiite south, Kurdish north and central Sunni Arab states would hamper Iraq's Arab identity and drag other countries in the region into the conflict.

The Saudi statements "do not reflect the reality of the situation," Sulagh said. "We understand the scope of these statements and their true objectives."

Shiites make up about 10 percent of the population in Saudi Arabia, and live mainly in the oil-rich Eastern Province near the borders with Kuwait and southern Iraq.

The interior minister's comments came as Arab ministers were preparing to meet in the Saudi Red Sea city of Jeddah to discuss ways to support Iraq, including the possibility of sending observers to monitor upcoming elections.

Sulagh's brother was kidnapped by armed men in Baghdad on Saturday, in a move the interior minister said was aimed at pressuring him personally.

10-02-2005, 09:26 PM

"Hey Mr. Pot! You're black!"

"Screw you Kettle!"