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IraqSide:Media
Daily Column
Shahrastani Faces an Uncertain Fate, Dozens of Iraqis Killed in Kirkuk
Az-Zaman
Az-Zaman
Note from the author: After two and a half years of reporting on the Iraqi and Arab media for the readers of Iraq Slogger, this experience has come to a close. It has been an honor and a pleasure, and I hope that my daily column has been of help to our faithful readers. I also hope that, one day not too far, good news will finally start emanating from Iraq, this fascinating country that has been tormented beyond belief. Please stay in touch: amer@berkeley.edu

Iraqi papers are out today due to the national holiday announced for the occasion of US withdrawal from Iraqi cities and urban centers. However, the day that Maliki described as “a great victory,” calling for Iraqis “to be joyous” and celebrate, has been marred by dozens of victims who fell in a massive explosion in Kirkuk.

Al-Jazeera reports that at least 32 Iraqis were killed in the northern city when a car exploded in a busy market....

Daily Column
Kurdistan Elections Heat Up, US Hands Over Control over Iraqi Cities
Az-Zaman
Az-Zaman
According to al-Jazeera, the Iraqi government intends to make June 30th, the official date of US withdrawal from Iraqi cities, into a national holiday. “The day of sovereignty” it will be called, reports al-Hayat, which says that large festivals and parades are organized in Iraqi cities in celebration on the 29th, while the 30th will be a holiday for the public and private sectors.

In effect, the withdrawal was mostly completed yesterday, Az-Zaman points out, reporting that the Iraqi forces received the old building of the Defense Ministry on Monday – the last structure under the control of US forces in the capital.

Expectedly, “the day of sovereignty” is reported with much pomp in government-owned As-Sabah, which announces in its headline: “Iraq celebrates its sovereignty,” claiming that “signs of joy” are apparent in Baghdad and the provinces and that...

Daily Column
New Kurdistan Constitution "A Bomb"!
al-Bayyna al-Jadeeda
al-Bayyna al-Jadeeda
According to al-'Arabiya, a freak sandstorm that has enveloped Baghdad has apparently postponed the controversial tendering process for Iraqi oil and gas fields, which was supposed to be launched over two days, starting today, by the Iraqi Oil Ministry.

In the “first round” of contracts, whose launch is now postponed till tomorrow, several giant oil fields containing over 40 billion barrels of proved reserves will be given up for development by foreign companies. For the sake of comparison, that amount represents more than double the entire proved reserves of the US. And in an age where control over oil deposits is shifting away from private companies to sovereign states, the Iraq oil bounty has attracted most of the big names in the international energy industry.

The granting of these contracts is supposed to occur through a complex process – on live TV. The Oil Ministry is to open the envelopes containing the bids of the energy companies, announce a winner for a specific project, then allow...

Iraqi Politicians Use Lawsuits against Writers and Intellectuals
Oil Minister Interrogated by Parliamentarians
Kurdish-Arab Conflicts Proliferate,Oil Contracts to be Handed by the End of June
US Accused of Bribing and Murdering Iraqi Journalists During Military Operations
Kurdish Parties Financed by the State Budget? Fierce Opposition to Oil Contracts
Talabani "Too Hasty" in Congratulating Ahmadinejad?
Iraq Plies to IMF Demands, Chalabi Involved in Re-Building the I'tilaf
Official Agents Accused of Assassinating MP, Treaty Referendum to be Postponed?
Deadly Bombing Near Nasiriya, Crisis over Oil Contracts Renews
Nineveh Witnesses Sharp Political Crisis, Baghdad Metro to be Finally Built?
Sadrists not to Re-Join Shi'a I'tilaf, Kuwait-Iraq Crisis Continues
Prisoners in South Go on Hunger Strike, Five Americans Arrested by Iraqi Police
Al-Sadr Blasts US President, Ashraf Camp Besieged
Iraq-Kuwait Crisis Escalates, More Corruption Trials to Come
Oil Exports from Kurdistan Begin, Egypt and Iraq Sign Arms' Deal
Crisis with Kuwait Escalates, Parliament Considers Imposing "War Reparations"
Commerce Minister Arrested, Hakeem and Maliki to Revive the I'tilaf?
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