Monday, August 13, 2007

Iraq Prime Minister Calls Emergency Summit

Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki has called for a political summit in a bid to consolidate political stability in the country. "We must look for solutions for the problems we are facing. I have invited major political leaders to a meeting to discuss substantial issues," he said Sunday, referring to different efforts aimed at undermining his national unity government. "Tomorrow or the day after tomorrow could be the first meeting for these leaders to discuss the political program and important strategic problems," the premier added.The latest obstacle, which further hampered the reconciliation efforts, was created this month when the main Sunni Arab bloc, the Accordance Front, withdrew its six members from Maliki's cabinet. "The Sunni Arabs, who along with Shias and Kurds are one of the three parts of Iraqi society, will not be excluded from the government," Maliki reiterated. He said he hoped the front would return, but if not, he could replace them with others, possibly tribal sheikhs. Maliki, President Jalal Talabani, and Vice President Adel Abdel Mahdi, are among those who are expected to attend the crisis summit.