Friday, August 24, 2007

Iraqi VP delivers Sunni ultimatum

ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — Iraq's vice president said Friday his Sunni political party will not return to its Cabinet positions unless their demands are met.

Tariq al-Hashemi's moderate party is part of a Sunni political alliance, the Accordance Front, which recently pulled five of its ministers out of the Shiite-dominated government, saying Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki failed to respond to a set of demands, including the release of security detainees held without charges.

"We don't have such a thought, such a willingness," al-Hashemi said in response to a question about whether the ministers would return to their Cabinet jobs. "We have suggested a package of reforms which includes our expectations; we may return to the Cabinet if the government meets our expectations."

Al-Hashemi's Iraqi Islamic Party is the moderate third of the largest Sunni bloc in parliament and was working to improve conditions for the detainees and to free the innocent among them....

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