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Iraq: Opposition Groups Meet In London

London, 14 December 2002 (RFE/RL) - Exiled Iraqi opposition groups are meeting in London today to discuss the political future of Iraq should President Saddam Hussein be toppled in any military confrontation with the U.S. The two-day conference brings together some 300 delegates from across the spectrum of Iraq's opposition groups. Conference organizers have said they hope the delegates will lay aside rivalries to agree on a common plan for a democratic and federal state.

Present are representatives of all six main Iraqi opposition groups. They include a Tehran-based Iraqi Shiite group (the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq), two Kurdish parties which control northern Iraq, and a London-based opposition umbrella group (the Iraqi National Congress).

Also present as observers at the conference are diplomats from the United States, Britain, Turkey, Kuwait, and Iran.