Shiite Fighters in Iraq "Trained by Hizbullah in Lebanon"

[Independent-UK] Nizar Latif and Phil Sands - Lebanon's Hizbullah has trained Shia fighters from Iraq in advanced guerrilla warfare tactics, according to Mehdi army militants who have been fighting British forces in southern Iraq. Iraqi militiaman Abu Muhannad, 39, said he had spent a month in southern Lebanon. "I was one of the experienced fighters from the Mehdi army to go for training there," he said. "We learned how to take advantage of an armored vehicle's weakness, and how to wait and kill the soldiers who try to escape." Another Mehdi Army fighter, Abu Nasser, 26, said he and 100 other group members traveled to Lebanon in December 2005. "They showed us real tactics and taught our snipers," he said. Speaking in Tufa in Iraq, Muqtada al-Sadr, the head of the Mehdi Army, admitted: "We have formal links with Hizbullah....We copy Hizbullah in the way they fight and their tactics, we teach each other and we are getting better through this." "We go [to Lebanon] and discuss what Israel's future plans are in the Middle East because we are part of whatever will happen," he said.

2007-08-21 01:00:00

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