Improved security means more people are out enjoying city life.
Locals enjoy a day out at the Baghdad Zoo, Aug. 8, 2008. (Photo by Spc. Charles Gill, Joint Combat Camera Center Iraq MNF-Iraq)
The following is a translation by Iraqi-American Haider Ajina from Buratha News on August 19, 2008:
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ATM machines spreading in Baghdad
ATM machines are gradually increasing their presence on the streets of the capital Baghdad. Iraqis use them daily to access cash in their checking accounts by using the ATM cards. The French news agency pointed out that the busiest ATM locations are in Kailani Plaza in central Baghdad which has much commercial activity. Baghdadis are eagerly accepting the use of these machines which are being placed inside market areas. The news agency printed a picture of a man using the ATM machine to withdraw funds from his checking account.
Some of the Iraqi banks have started supplying their customers with ATM cards, the rest of the banks have promised to supply ATM cards to their customers soon.
Haider Ajina comments:
The installation and spreading of ATM machines in Baghdad is a testament to the security situation in the Capital. I find it hard to believe that any one would risk installing ATM machines let alone use them if security around them is suspect. Even on the streets of small town USA we are cautious about getting cash from an ATM machine. Iraqis in Baghdad are feeling secure enough to walk up to a machine and withdraw cash in a public place. This is just another piece of evidence that the surge (operation Rule of law to Iraqis) was and is successful beyond many expectations.