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Reports Say Iraq Talks Stalled Over Role Of Islam, Oil


http://gdb.rferl.org/5C620589-B764-42F1-8D8A-AABF4172B095_w203.jpg --> http://gdb.rferl.org/5C620589-B764-42F1-8D8A-AABF4172B095_mw800_mh600.jpg Would-be drafters are said to be stuck on Islam's role in an Iraqi constitution (file photo) 20 August 2005 -- Reports today suggested that talks to draft a new Iraqi constitution have stalled over the role of Islam and the distribution of the country's oil wealth.

Leaders of all factions today were meeting today in Baghdad.

Iraq has until the end of the day on 22 August to complete work on a draft constitution -- otherwise parliament must dissolve.

Mullah Bakhtiyar, a senior official from the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan, the political party of Iraq's President Jalal Talabani, said negotiations on the role of Islam in the new state "are still under way."

Salih al-Mutlaq, a Sunni, said the talks have bogged down after "deep differences" over the role of Islam emerged.

In the mainly Kurdish city of Kirkuk, several hundred Arabs demonstrated against the charter today, chanting "Yes to unity, no to federalism."

(AP/Reuters/AFP)

More on efforts to forge an Iraqi constitution:

"Iraq: Shi'a Religious Parties Press For Islamic Values"

"Iraq: Assessing The Strengths And Dangers Of Federalism"

"Iraq: Constitutional Committee Gets Another Week To Resolve Disputes"
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