(BAGHDAD) — More than four months after the U.S. withdrew nearly all of its troops from Iraq, the security situation there seems to be going as well as can be expected, given the threats from al Qaeda and the local insurgency that still exists.
That’s the conclusion of Martin Kobler, who serves as the United Nations secretary general’s special envoy to Iraq.
There were deep concerns that once American soldiers left Iraq, militants would take advantage of a security vacuum since many observers felt the Iraqi army and police weren’t up to the task of defending their country from internal and external threats.
However, Kobler said Monday, “All our figures indicate that there is no deterioration in the security situation of the country.”
An estimated 600 people have died due to militant-related violence in 2012, a high number but nothing compared to the fatality figures from other years.
While the security situation appears to have stabilized, the political climate remains tense with Iraqi Vice President Tariq al-Hashemi facing trial for allegedly ordering death squads against Shiites. Al-Hashemi, who is currently in Turkey, denies the charges.
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio
Paul Cruickshank and Michael Pearson, CNN