Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Victory in Iraq News: "Arabs, Turks and Christians United Against Islamic Terrorists"

On the Ground: US Forces Aid City, Improve Quality of Life in Iraq

American Forces Press Service

Iraq: July 8, 2009 – U.S. forces strengthened relationships with their Iraqi counterparts in recent days as they worked to help a city in need and to improve health care and quality of life throughout Iraq.

U.S. forces are providing humanitarian aid to the residents of an Iraqi city recovering after a devastating truck bomb attack in June. Representatives from the 1st Cavalry Division’s 2nd Brigade Combat Team and the Kirkuk provincial reconstruction team traveled to Taza, south of Kirkuk, on June 27 to assist in the recovery.

Forces assessed the security situation, delivered much-needed water and inspected a tent city. The Turkish government and several nongovernmental organizations donated the tents to residents who lost their homes in the blast, said Army Capt. Nathan Jennings, commander of Company C, 4th Squadron, 9th Cavalry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team.

"The town has been feeding at least 3,000 people a day since the blast to accommodate the family members and friends who came to attend funerals," Jennings said. "We brought the water to make sure the visitors had enough."

Water lines leading to the destroyed homes have been temporarily repaired, and water to the city has been restored, said Talib, Taza’s mayor.

Chris Jennings, from the Kirkuk reconstruction team, offered his team’s help with recovery efforts.

"In the coming weeks, we can start looking at offering micro-grants to help businesses that were damaged in the attack rebuild," Jennings said.

A plan is in place; however, it will take about a year to rebuild, the mayor said.

"If terrorists knew this explosion would have unified Arabs, Turks and Christians, they wouldn't have done it," Talib said. "It has united us."


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