Minutes after nighttime curfew began in Baghdad at 9 pm we saw breaking news on al-Hurra and al-Jazeera saying that Baghdad’s security operation has just started.
The news says the first operation is currently underway in Azamiyah in the northeastern part of the city.
However, it looks quiet here at the moment, except for a sudden increase in activity in the skies with US jet fighters patrolling over the northern parts of Baghdad.
We’re now only a few kilometers far from Azamiyah, so if there’s going to be some action, we’ll certainly hear-or see-it, and we’ll keep you updated.
UPDATE: US says it is on. Maliki Government says it isn’t.
From Radio Sawa:
A joint US and Iraqi force stormed al-Azamiyah neighborhood in Baghdad in what an American military official described as the start for the awaited security operation in Baghdad.
Major Robbie Park said 2,000 US soldiers are working side by side with soldiers from the 1st and 9th divisions of the Iraqi army…The troops searched dozens of homes in and around Azamiyah and confiscated large amounts of weapons.
But an assistant to PM Maliki denied that this was the start of the new security operation, saying that this is a limited operation (the government ordered) after receiving information that insurgents are hiding in the neighborhood.
Whether this is the start of Operation Baghdad or not, the operation is taking place without making any noise. Tonight is even quieter than the average Baghdad night! — Omar
UPDATE: AFP confirms PJM report @ 12:50 PST. “Iraqi and US forces swept through a notorious Sunni district of Baghdad, searching houses and seizing weapons in a blitz involving around 2,000 US troops and an Iraqi army brigade” (Yahoo News) — PJM Editors