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Iraqi Leaders Discuss Draft Constitution --> Ibrahim al-Ja'fari (file photo) 5 August 2005 (RFE/RL) -- Iraqi Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Ja'fari today had talks with Iraq's top Shiite cleric to discuss Iraq's new constitution.

Al-Ja'fari talked with Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani in Al-Najaf. Sistani later said that Sistani said the constitution should reflect Iraq's sectarian, ethnic, and political make-up.

Al-Ja'fari said Sistani is willing to accept a federal Iraq if Iraqis want it.

Meanwhile, Iraqi leaders have postponed a meeting aimed at resolving the remaining differences over the country's draft constitution. The meeting was scheduled for today but was put off until 7 August.

Iraqi leaders say they will have the new constitution ready by 15August.

Outstanding issues that need to be solved reportedly include federalism, the role of Islam, and distribution of the country's oil wealth.


See also:

Kurds Taking Hard-Line Stance On Constitution

For RFE/RL's full coverage of developments in Iraq, see "The New Iraq"