Sunday, August 28, 2005

IRAQI president Jalal Talabani has said Iraq's draft constitution is ready to be put to the vote in an October 15 referendum, ending weeks of tortuous negotiations. "The draft constitution is ready and will be presented to the Iraqi people, who are known for their intelligence, to give their verdict on October 15," Mr Talabani said at a ceremony overnight to mark the end of the drafting process. "There are objections from our Sunni Arab brothers ... but nobody can claim that they represent the whole spectrum of Sunni Arabs," said the president, who is a Kurd. He said the draft, when approved by the people, would become the "fundamental law" of the nation. "If the nation rejects it, we will write another one," said Mr Talabani. Iraq's parliament held a special session on the draft constitution but did not vote on it. (Daily Telegraph [UK])

Backgrounder: Twists and turns in making Iraq's constitution. A draft constitution of Iraq was signed by an overwhelming majority of the panel on Sunday. Here is a brief account of the twists and turns experienced in the making of the permanent constitution. [...] (XINHUA online)