CBC News: Iraq bars non-Iraqi Arabs from the country

There are two interesting tid-bits in this article. The first:

It’s believed most enter illegally through Iraq’s thinly-guarded desert borders.

and the second:

An Associated Press correspondent of Egyptian nationality was also barred from boarding a plane Friday for Baghdad. Iraqi officials say there will be no exceptions to the new rule.

The two taken together with this comment

An Interior Ministry official said it was “part of security procedures” reportedly implemented Nov. 29, with no formal announcement. No date for lifting the restriction has been set.

shows that they aren’t serious about security and they are serious about reducing the chances of a free and fair election. I wonder if the Bush-Wants-To-Bomb-Al-Jazeera memo prompted any of this. Probably not, but it does make for a lovely paranoid fantasy doesn’t it.

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