Obama Says Baghdad Bombings Are an Attempt to Stop Progress in Iraq
Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said the "savage" suicide bombings attacks will not succeed in undermining Iraq's progress toward stability, self-reliance and justice based on the rule of law.
The White House said Obama spoke to Iraq's president, Jalal Talabani, and prime minister, Nouri al-Maliki, about nine hours after the suicide bombings, which killed 136 people. The blasts struck near the Justice Ministry and city government offices in downtown Baghdad. They were the worst attacks in more than two years and came ahead of national elections in January.
Obama said the attacks were an attempt to stop progress in Iraq, but he said they were no match "for the courage and resilience of the Iraqi people and their determination to build strong institutions."
"The United States will stand with Iraq's people and government as a close friend and partner as Iraqis prepare for elections early next year, continue to take responsibility for their future, and build greater peace and opportunity," the president said in a statement. "Together, we will continue to work for lasting security, dignity and justice."
No group claimed responsibility immediately following the blasts, but the Shiite-dominated government has been a target of Sunni insurgents.
"These bombings serve no purpose other than the murder of innocent men, women and children, and they only reveal the hateful and destructive agenda of those who would deny the Iraqi people the future that they deserve," Obama said.
"I strongly condemn these outrageous attacks on the Iraqi people, and send my deepest condolences to those who have lost loved ones," Obama said in a statement. "These bombings serve no purpose other than the murder of innocent men, women and children, and they only reveal the hateful and destructive agenda of those who would deny the Iraqi people the future that they deserve."
In her statement, Clinton said the U.S. would work together with Iraqis "to combat all forms of violence and attempts at intimidation."