Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

BUSINESS DAILY

$3 trillion wiped off global markets since Brexit

Read more

EYE ON AFRICA

South African President Zuma advised to pay $510,000 for home upgrades

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Post-Referendum Racism

Read more

THE DEBATE

Messy Divorce: EU, UK scramble after Brexit vote (part 1)

Read more

THE DEBATE

Messy Divorce: EU, UK scramble after Brexit vote (part 2)

Read more

THE OBSERVERS

Introducing "Observers take action"!

Read more

TALKING EUROPE

UK votes to leave the EU: What now?

Read more

ENCORE!

Music show: Metronomy, Celine Dion, Snoop Dogg and Jazz

Read more

FOCUS

Drug dealers of hope: Activists fight for access to life-saving Hepatitis C cure

Read more

Middle east

Reporter’s Notebook: Politics and prayer

Text by Lucas MENGET

Latest update : 2010-03-06

FRANCE 24 correspondent Lucas Menget is in Baghdad to cover the upcoming legislative elections. This is his "reporter's notebook" on the situation in the Iraqi capital.

FRIDAY, March 5

Life appears to grind to a halt for two hours every Friday morning in Baghdad's Shiite stronghold of Sadr City. Dust seems to be suspended, frozen even, in the air. The children play noiselessly in the streets. The reason for this cessation of activity? Friday prayers.

Two days before key legislative elections, the city’s political and religious leaders are out in force at the mosque. In white or black turbans and long robes, they pack out the front rows of the prayer room as the faithful praise the name of the prophet Hussein.

Infamous Shiite leader Muqtada Sadr is the only missing face. But this is not unusual. Is the radical young chief hiding in Qom, Iran, or Kufa, Iraq? Wherever he is, the hero of anti-American Iraqis called upon his fellow citizens to vote on Sunday and his supporters in Sadr City are now awaiting his instructions on how they should vote.

Meanwhile, Sadr’s representative is at the mosque praying at the top of his lungs. In between prayers, he hollers out his party’s fundamental views to the people. Sadr’s movement hasn’t changed and neither has Sadr City.



Read Thursday's note

Date created : 2010-03-06

  • 2010 Iraqi parliamentary elections

    Read more

COMMENT(S)