US prepares fresh PR drive in Iraq

WASHINGTON: The US government is to launch a fresh ‘aggressive’ campaign to sell democracy in Iraq and boost the reputation of the allied forces’ lead military operation Multi-National Corps-Iraq (MNC-I).

MNC-I will eventually manage the initiative, which involves media training its Iraqi and non-Iraqi staff.

The campaign, designed to boost public opinion of the allied-led force, will also require monitoring of public opinion.

Companies invited to tender for the contract include US-based agencies and Western-oriented contractors in the Middle East.

The contract will be awarded initially for a year with the possibility of a one-year extension. MNC-I was set up in May to tackle ‘non-compliant forces’ in Iraq.

The Coalition Provisional Authority enlisted Bell Pottinger Communications for a three-month contract in March to campaign for the establishment of democracy.

Bell Pottinger led a consortium of agencies to promote elections and the transition to Iraqi rule.

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