Thursday, August 18, 2005

Iraqi politicians tried to reach compromises with Sunni Arab leaders today on the country’s draft constitution. [...] Talks on the draft constitution resumed today as five Sunni Arabs on the drafting committee met with Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari and discussed points of disagreement such as federalism, according to a statement released by al-Jaafari’s office. The Sunnis gave al-Jaafari a list of unresolved issues, the statement added. Before the meeting one Sunni said he was confident that leaders could finish the document by the new deadline, but warned that serious issues needed to be addressed. “I expect that the constitution would be finished before Monday. Negotiations are still underway and everybody are determined to finish it before the deadline,” said Saleh al-Mutlaq, a Sunni member of the constitutional committee. However, al-Mutlaq warned that serious differences remain. “I believe that there are some groups that have taken more than they deserve and want to pass the constitution quickly,” he said. “In order for this constitution to work, these groups that have taken more than what they deserve must abandon some of their demands.” (Ireland On-Line)

Monday, August 15, 2005

Iraqi politicians agreed Monday on a draft constitution but decided to put off two key issues - women's rights and whether Kurds might someday secede - so the document could be submitted to parliament by a midnight deadline, two Shiite officials said. (AP)