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Statement by Mr. Sameer Al- Sumidaee
Iraqi Minister of Interior
 Remarks given at a press conference
April, 17th, 2004
Saturday, 3:00 pm

I have received a great responsibility last Friday, which is the responsibility of the Ministry of Interior in this critical situation that our country is facing.

I know exactly the importance of the task that is facing me and the ministry at the present time. Iraq - is under occupation and is about to receive the sovereignty from the occupying forces to prepare the country for an elected government. In my previous role as a member of the Governing Council, I was a part of this political process and I gave it the best I could to move Iraq as quick as possible towards: independence and building – building of institutions, building of the country, building the economy and building new life for the citizens, but this process that we started a year ago faced and is facing dangerous challenges.

The powers of backwardness, criminals and outside elements who hate Iraq have become one aiming to frustrate this project, the project of building a democratic and free country. These powers of darkness do not want Iraq to develop or to be an open country attracting investments to create more jobs, improve the services, establish security and live in peace and love regardless of religion, ethnicity, political and intellectual aims.

The powers of backwardness and terrorism support huge gangs, among them are the members of the gang that rolled Iraq previously and was defeated in April, 9th, 2003 but sill dreaming to be back to burden the Iraqi people. Therefore we are witnessing a fierce attack targeting all essential services and stability factors under the motto “occupation resisting” and this motto is false, because all they are doing is solidifying the occupation, keeping it longer and disallowing the Iraqi security forces to gradually take over security from the occupying forces.

How can we explain the targeting of the UN, foreign embassies, Red Cross, oil pipe lines, electricity stations, police stations, and even the schools? How can we explain terrorizing people and threatening them not to go to their businesses and prohibiting their sons from going to their schools and colleges?

A country can not flourish with instability; it can not be prosperous except under the sovereignty of law. Therefore the most important issues facing the people of Iraq are security and sovereignty of law. Success to implement law, on all individuals, requires two conditions:

 First, people need to cooperate and help the authorities to stand against the criminals and outlaws who are threatening their lives and future.

 Second, the existence of an efficient and capable security forces able to do their duties lawfully.

There are some who say we will not accept such a country or authority under the occupation. It is beautifully said, but two years ago 99% of the people wished strongly for any power to come and help them remove the beast that humiliated and tortured them. This force came and removed Saddam`s regime and was committed to the Security Council resolutions to guide the country and its people towards the establishing of an elected government by free ballot under international supervision. What we find today? We find a lot of ignorants, criminals, terrorists, ignorants who are not realizing the consequences of their acts are facing this situation neither with reason nor with satisfaction but with arms, terrorism, kidnapping, looting and sabotage.

Let us ask ourselves: - If they “win their war” against the new government, what will happen? Will they oblige the coalition forces to leave the country, and “win the war” against police forces by occupying the stations, destroying and looting them again, and “win the war” against the embassies by storming them and killing who ever is inside, and “win the war” against the aid organizations and foreign companies (such as the Russian company which is fixing the electricity), and “win the war” against the oil facilities to stop exporting oil. If all these winnings happed, what will happen to Iraq? What will happen to the homeland and its people?

We say this can’t happen and will not happen. We have struggled for many years to be free from an oppressive and organized dictatorship, so how can we accept handing over the country to small groups of disordered, criminal or terrorist dictators?

We call upon our Iraqi brothers and sisters to realize the risks of this plight and face it with all means available.

Now we will talk about the Ministry of Interior. After the fall of the previous regime, all its institutes and among them was the Ministry of Interior, had fallen.

In order to keep the security, eradicate crime and impose the authority of law, we need to rehabilitate this ministry and all its systems on healthy bases and to get rid of all the negative appearances that we inherited from the previous regime.

Now I’m about to set up a practical plan to upgrade the ministry by, relying on the efficient and faithful staff, providing all required elements to raise the level of performance, training, equipment, impulse, deterrent and lawful framework, and by depending on modern technology and making use of international expertise.

We should reward the faithful and punish the bad and put people service as a measure to the performance of the ministry. We should honor the police members for the courage and firmness they showed to face those who challenge the law, and to get rid of those who joined just for the salary.

We will not tolerate criminals and those who threat the security of citizens, and we will deal strictly with those who violate the authority of the law. On the other hand law abiding citizens deserve all care and services.

By doing this, we hope to put the Ministry of Interior in a new status, with the cooperation of people and the honest efforts of the ministry personnel, so we can make the people realize the results in their daily life. And by this great work we are preparing Iraqi security forces to do their job and take over security tasks from the coalition authority as quick as possible and thus we would fulfill our duty towards our great country and people.



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