U.S. envoy: Al-Qaida in Iraq weaker than before
The outgoing U.S. Ambassador to Iraq, Christopher Hill, said on Tuesday that al-Qaida in Iraq is getting weaker than in the past and does not have much support now, Xinhua reported.
Hill, a veteran U.S. diplomat who is about to retire from his foreign service, made the remarks during a press briefing on the situation of Iraq at the State Department.
"They (al-Qaida members) have great difficulty communicating outside of the country. They have great difficulty communicating with each other and we know this from various means," he said.
"They have funding problems. I know you've heard many people say from many, many podiums that somehow they're on the run, I can tell you what can be done against them is being done against them, " he said.
Hill believed that the fight against al-Qaida in Iraq has improved because of the joined efforts by U.S. military and Iraqi security forces.
He insisted that al-Qaida in Iraq is getting weaker, saying the organization now "is not able to hold onto a city, a single building or a city block."
"So I don't think there's much support at all. On the contrary, there's a sort of general revulsion at their behavior," he said.
However, Hill admitted that despite the progress achieved, it is frustrating to witness the violence that has caused huge casualties. He also said that it is difficult to predict when it will end.
Iraq is witnessing a resurgence of violence recently as a new government is still not in place five months after the parliamentary elections.
At least 48 people were killed and more than 100 wounded on Tuesday in a suicide bomb attack on an army recruitment center in Baghdad.
The mounting death toll has cast doubt on Iraq's ability to secure itself while the Obama administration is determined to withdraw U.S. troops on schedule regardless of the rampant violence.