Iraqi PM Will Meet US Delegation on Conditions; Crisis Continue

Stop Fundamentalism – Iraqi authorities told the news media yesterday that a Delegation from United State including a number of Members of US Congress arrived in Baghdad to discuss the current political crisis in the country.

At the same time Adnan Al-Saraj, a government official close to Nouri al-Maliki told Asharq Alawsat Newspaper that the Prime Minister will only meet the delegation on the condition that it will not discuss the current crisis over Mr. Tariq Al-Hashimi, Iraq’s Vice-President.

Maliki also is asking the US not to make another visit to Iraq without advance notice and official agreement.

Meanwhile the crisis in Iraq continues.  A Kurdish television reported yesterday about some intended replacements in the government; Mahmoud Mashhadi to replace Tariq Al-Hashimi as Vice-President and Salam Zobeii to replace the Saleh Al-Mulaq as Deputy Prime Minister. The two, Hashimi and Mutlaq are outspoken Iraqi leaders critic of Maliki’s policies that the Prime Minister is trying to expel from his government and is following to persecute. 

Maliki has charged Al-Hashimi with being involved in terrorism.  Hashimi rejects the allegations as an attempt by Maliki to sideline his political opponents and create a new dictatorial rule in Iraq.

National Unity, Nouri al-Maliki’s bloc, has asked the Parliament to expel Saleh Al-Mutlaq from the government.

Al-Nojaifi, President of Parliament of Iraq, warned yesterday about militarization of Iraq and misuse of power by Iraqi security forces and army to oppress the people.

The United Nations Secretary General, Ban Ki-moon, in a statement yesterday expressed “concern about recent political tensions that could contribute to further insecurity” in Iraq.  In the statement the Secretary General called for “political dialogue to address outstanding issues in a spirit of partnership and national unity.”

Meanwhile, Ban Ki-moon’s Special Representative for Iraq, Martin Kobler met Iraq’s President Jalal Talabani in Sulymaniya and the Kurdistani Region President Masoud Barzaniin in Erbil and other senior Iraqi officials yesterday to discuss the current political crisis.

Kobler expressed concern about the current political stalemate in Iraq and urged Iraqi parties and leaders to enter dialogue to resolve the matter.