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Iraq's Sunni President Backs Election Date

Iraqi President al-Yawir (file photo) 1 December 2004 -- Iraq's influential Sunni Muslim interim president today threw his support behind holding national elections as scheduled on 30 January.

Ghazi Ajil al-Yawir said in Baghdad that the government has a legal and moral obligation to conduct the elections on that promised date.

Meanwhile, Iraq's two main Kurdish political parties say they will run on the same list. The announcement was made by Mas'ud Barzani, who heads the Kurdistan Democratic Party.

Barzani was speaking in northern Iraq after meeting with Jalal Talabani, whose Patriotic Union of Kurdistan is the Kurdish community's other main party.

Several major Iraqi political parties and groups have called for postponing the elections for up to six months to grant time to improve security. Some Sunni clerics have called for boycotting the balloting.