Crackdown in tense city

BAGHDAD - Three Iraqi army brigades from the Kurdish north and the Shi'ite south will be brought in for a security crackdown in an explosive Baghdad believed to be central to averting civil war.

BAGHDAD - Three Iraqi army brigades from the Kurdish north and the Shi'ite south will be brought in for a security crackdown in an explosive Baghdad believed to be central to averting civil war.

Sami al-Askari, an adviser to Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki, said yesterday the extra troops were part of the plan which foresees Iraqi forces taking responsibility for inner Baghdad while US-led multinational forces will be in charge of the surrounding areas.

Maliki announced the plan on Saturday, vowing to crush illegal armed groups "regardless of sect or politics" - suggesting he may be ready to tackle militias loyal to his fellow Shi'ites. - Reuters

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