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Interior Ministry: Jones Report "Retarded"
Iraqi General Claims Assessment Ignored Recent Reform Measures
09/07/2007 2:42 PM ET
Baghdad, IRAQ: Iraqi National Police security check motorists on Palestine street, close to the Iraqi finance ministry's information section in Baghdad.
Ali Yussef/AFP/Getty
Baghdad, IRAQ: Iraqi National Police security check motorists on Palestine street, close to the Iraqi finance ministry's information section in Baghdad.

The Interior Ministry takes offense at being called Iraq's most "dysfunctional" and sectarian government apparatus in the Jones Report, and has now responded with a little of its own name-calling.

The Director of the National Command Center in the Interior Ministry, Gen. Abdul Karim Khalaf said Friday that "thousands of corrupted policemen have been sacked recently," describing the report as "retarded" and covering the period before the ministry enacted reform measures.

"The new recruitments in the ministry are now being done according to regulations and tough orders," Khalaf added.

"One of the conditions provided is that the policeman should be not a member of a political party or a religious movement," the Iraqi general added.

"The interior ministry is for all Iraqis and it does not deal only with a certain group or community. Its main target is to achieve security and stability throughout Iraq," he explained.

Defense Department spokesman Geoff Morrell on Thursday acknowledged the validity of the Jones Report criticisms regarding the sectarianism of the Interior Ministry, but said the Iraqi government also recognized problems exist and was taking steps to address them.

While Morrell didn't reference the "thousands" Khalaf said had been dismissed, he did point out that the Iraqi government had fired two division commanders and nine brigade commanders deemed too sectarian as part of the process.

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