Members of the Governing Council and other Iraqi officials today praised the new charter. Hoshyar Zebari, foreign minister in the transitional cabinet, called the signing a key milestone toward the handover of civil authority by occupation authorities, planned for the end of June.
"It's a new beginning for Iraq, it's the beginning of rebuilding the Iraqi state on a new basis, a new tenet -- a state of law, a state of democratic institutions, a state of equality, a state of the bill of rights. I think this framework is essential for rebuilding Iraq," Zebari said.
The document provides for a federal state with two official languages, Arabic and Kurdish, where Islam will be one, but not be the main source of legislation. It also includes a bill of rights.
The signing of the interim constitution in Iraq has been postponed twice -- once after a series of bomb explosions targeting Shi'ites and again after Shi'ites on the council expressed concerns with the terms.