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New Mexican (Newspaper) - January 31, 2005, Santa Fe, New Mexico IRACt Continued from Page Al ner and said they had no firm estimate of turnout among the 14 million eligible voters The ticket endorsed by the Shiite Grand Ayatollah AH alSistani was the prevoting favorite Interim Prime Minister Ayad Allawis slate was also consid ered strong The world is hearing the voice of freedom from the center of the said President Bush who called the election a success He promised the United States would continue training Iraqi soldiers hoping they can soon secure a country America invaded nearly two years ago to topple Saddam Iraqis the president said had firmly rejected the antidemocratic ideology of terrorists The vote to elect a 275National Assembly and 18 provincial legislatures was only the first step on Iraqs road to selfrule and stability Once results are in it could take weeks of backroom deals before a prime minister and government are picked by the new assembly If that government proves successful by drawing in the minority Sunni Arabs who partly shunned the election the country could stabilize hasten ing the day when troops can go home On Sunday coalition sol diers raced through Bagh dads streets in Humvees and tried to coax people to vote with loudspeakers in Ramadi a Sunni city where attacks are frequent Iraqi police served as guards at most polling stations and troops had strict orders to stay away unless Iraqi secu rity forces called for help At the Louisiana National Guard headquarters near Baghdad nervous offi cers paced the halls mutter ing So far so after Monday January 31 2005 THE NEW MEXICAN A3 Plane crash kills at least 10 British troops The Associated Press After all traffic was prohibited thousands of Iraqis made the trip on foot to the town of Al Ala mara to cast their votes Sunday Iraqis turned out to vote in their countrys first free election in decades defying insurgents who launched deadly suicide bombings and mortar strikes at polling stations In Saddams hometown of Tikrit no more than 400 people voted and in the heavily Sunni northern Baghdad neighborhood of Azamiyah the four polling places never even opened the first 30 minutes of polling passed without attacks But the violence soon broke out While a driving ban seemed to discourage car bombs the insurgents improvised strap ping on belts of explosives to launch their suicide missions At least 44 died in the suicide and mortar attacks on polling stations including nine suicide bombers The alQaida affiliate led by Jordanian terror mas termind Abu Musab alZarqawi claimed responsibility for at least four attacks Most attacks were in Baghdad but one of the deadliest came in Hillah to the south when a bomber got onto a minibus carrying voters and detonated his explosives killing himself and at least four others In another reminder of the dangers that persist in Iraq a British C130 Hercules trans port plane crashed north of Baghdad The wreckage was strewn over a large area No cause was given but Britains Press Association quoting military sources said about 10 British troops were believed to have died Else where one serviceman died in fighting in the Sunni stronghold of Anbar province west of Baghdad Despite the string of attacks and mortars that boomed first in the morning and then after dark a people steeled to violence by years of war sanctions the brutal ity of Saddams regime and military occupation were not deterred from the polls In the socalled triangle of death south of Baghdad a whiskery stooped Abed Hunni walked an hour with his wife to reach a polling site in Musayyib God is gener ous to give us this he said Los Angeles Times LONDON Britain suf fered what appeared to be its worst loss of life since the war in Iraq began 22 months ago when a Royal Air Force transport plane went down Sunday in clear skies north west of Baghdad leaving a trail of debris strewn over a wide area Military sources quoted by British newspapers and by the British Broadcasting Co said at least 10 British service personnel had died and that the final toll could reach 15 Prime Minister Tony Blair mourned the troops deaths which came on the same day that millions of Iraqis defied militant warnings not to vote in their countrys first free election in five decades This country and the world will never forget Blair said speaking at his Downing Street home Our thoughts and prayers are with the families of those who lost their lives earlier today They can be so proud of what their loved ones he said The Royal Air Force C130 Hercules was on a 40mile flight from Baghdad to Balad air base a principal logistics distribution center for the and allied forces in Iraq It went down around about 25 miles northwest of the capital in an area where regular British troops seldom operate There was no immedi ate information on whether mechanical failure of hostile fire brought down the air craft considered one of the safest in the military Mili tary officials also declined to detail the planes mission The Daily Telegraph news paper said the plane may have been carrying elite SAS troops on special operations and that it appeared to have been downed by insurgents Insurgents have repeatedly fired shoulderlaunched mis siles at aircraft in and around Baghdad as well as in the north and west of the country and a number of military heli copters have been shot down during the war However they have never brought down a fixedwing aircraft If the Hercules plane was indeed shot down it would represent a major success for the insurgents said the Daily Telegraph Wing Commander Nigel Arnold of the RAF base in Lyneham Wiltshire said the air force was in the process of contacting the families of those on the flight He declined to give further information but pledged a thorough investigation of the crash Before Sunday Britain had recorded 76 military deaths in Iraq In the worst incident eight British servicemen died in the crash of a helicop ter on March 21 2003 one of the first days of the war to oust Saddam Hussein Of the deaths 49 had been from hostile fire with the rest from accidents and other causes Paul Keetch the defense spokesman for the Liberal Democrats among Britains three main political parties to oppose the invasion of Iraq called the loss It is doubly sad that their loss occurs on the same day as Iraq has gone to the polls We can only wish that their sacrifice can help build a democratic he told reporters REACTION Continued from Page Al The rise of Iraqs Shiite community was of major interest to their Shiite breth ren in neighboring Saudi Arabia and a concern to the kingdoms leadership The Shiite minority in that country centered in its East ern Province has long com plained of discrimination People are glued to their TV screens in alQatif and Ihsaa Shiitedominated towns in Eastern Province said Muhammad Mahfouz a Shiite editor of a cultural magazine Shiite clergy prayed for smooth and safe elections during special services held Saturday for Ghadeer a day marking what Shiites believe was the prophet Muhammads naming of his soninlaw Ali as his successor Some of Iraqs Sunni Arab neighbors have expressed fears a Shiitedominated gov ernment in Iraq could join with Iran to form a Shiite crescent threatening traditional Sunni dominance of the region and inspiring potential political claims by other Shiites The columnist alHamad who lives in the Eastern Prov ince said a Shiite government in Iraq will give Saudi Shiites the confidence to lobby more persistently for those But they are not demand ing selfrule or an alliance with Iran They just want rights that citizens in any country he said Arab intellectuals politi cians and writers differed over whether the elections would provide a good exam ple for democratic reform in a region where free and fair elections are rare and human rights groups operate with 96 9829663 Guadaiupe at Manhallan nexl o Cardrageous 9841091 95 v Co Gift Shop Open Year Round 6729791 BANDELIER NATIONAL MONUMENT NOTICE TO CUSTOMERS IN NEW MEXICO KlTrctivc IVbruary 7 2005 will increase the Public Iayphom Surcharge lo iOC The Public Pnyphone Surcharge applies to calls placed from a public or semipublic payphone that are paid for by means oilier than depositing coins into the payphone Till new payphonc service charges correspond to interstate charges Plieist1 call tollfree lo an service represenlalive should yon have any questions these services Residential customers 1 Business customers 1 difficulty Arab League spokesman Hossam Zaki said the election was a step forward hut added that Iraq with its unstable security situation was a model to be Lebanese politician Walid Jumblatt said the polls can only be judged after the results come out But so far theyve proven a bizarre with candidates campaigning furtively for fear of insurgent attacks and Sunni Muslims boycotting the process Writing in Beiruts Al Amvar newspaper political analyst Rafik Khoury said Arab governments who have criticized shortcomings of Iraqs elections demand ing that they be honest and themselves ban such elections for their own An Egyptian student Ahmed Abdel Rahman openly spoke about not trusting intentions in Iraq saying the new Iraqi ruler will be a fol lower of BIRDS 18O1 LA CANTfNA TUP BISTOI BROADWAY NIGHTLY SUN THURS SliATINC IRI it SAT AND SILATINf dIA CAVUMA 125 Ialne Santa tc Krrrrmtimis Why is the sky blue Good Question A new feoture in Health Science where your most provocative questions get answered beginning Monday February 7 Send your questions to or mail or drop off to Good Question The New Mexican 202 E Marcy Santa Fe 87501 THE SANTA FE Gel lie whole xtnrv Good Question Good Answer THE SANTA FE 9840363 or 18008733372 Email firstname.lastname@example.org If your paper is not delivered by 6 please report by 11 to Circulation at 9810363 or Tollfree outside Santa Fe 18008733372 Home DeHyery wh wk Have a car to sell Want to rent your house Planning a garage sale 9863000 Private Party 9863000 Businesses Tonfree Fax 8201635 Email M63058 9863082 Tollfree 180O8733362 Advertising Fax 9841785 Legal Ads 9M3071 OMtaaries After hours 9863035 9863030 Emnil Business News 9863011 Capitol Bureau Phone 9863037 City Tips 9863035 Newsroom Fax 9869117 Pasatiempo 9953839 Pasatiempo Fax 8200803 Sports 9953885 Sports Tollfree 18007431186 Sports Fax 986 3067 But when asked if democ racy can grow in Egypt where President Hosni Mubarak is widely expected to seek a fifth term in power TRAVEL BUG SUMS COffCC Shop Guatemala trsintl Buy tvants ijr full 7 for 1 All w Affordable Vintage fntnjayet Cowboy Soots 227 Don Gaspar Avenue 5059891554 the 20yearold looked over his shoulder and said Lets talk about Iraq Lets stay away from talking about Stressless by Ekorne Friendly VODKA LEM TODAY In itponold 7530087 lean C ocloiiii 418 Mentoiumo 9862711 jj E COACH CARTER PG13 RACING STRIPES PG AND WE THERE YET PG 4 JO DOLLAR I HOTEL Puss Restricted Movies and Times subject to change call Movie Times to 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