April 26 - Candidates in Anbar, where security forces are locked in battle with the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, continue low-profile campaigns ahead of April 30 elections. Gavino Garay reports.
Ahead of an April 30 national election in Iraq, candidates in the Anbar province are pressing on with low profile campaigns. Security forces here have been battling the al Qaeda offshoot Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant for four months. Female candidate Rabba Mohammed isn't let the violence stop her. (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) FEMALE CANDIDATE, RABBA MOHAMMED, SAYING: "As a national duty and to serve the people of my beloved and oppressed province of Ramadi I decided to run in the parliamentary election. Anbar province is subjected to forceful displacement, destruction, starvation and arbitrary shelling. Anbar province is a stricken area today, in the sense of the word. " Candidate Aref Al-Sayyiad says security protocols are in place for a smooth election. (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) CANDIDATE, AREF AL-SAYYIAD, SAYING: "We are in the center of Ramadi city the capital of Anbar province. We usually wander around, and there is relative calm. The scheduled election will be held smoothly and neutrally according to the required security standard. The security forces are working normally to protect election stations. " The elections come during a turbulent time in Iraq. On Friday, Reuters cameras captured a roadside bomb that exploded during a Shi'ite political rally in Baghdad. It was part of a series of explosions that killed dozens. The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant claimed responsibility for that attack.