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Bush 'Very Optimistic' About Iraq's Future

29 August 2005 -- U.S. President George W. Bush today said he is "very optimistic" about Iraq's future, and downplayed disagreements over the country's draft constitution that will be voted on in a referendum.

Bush, speaking in Arizona, admitted that "not everybody agreed" on the document, which was presented yesterday to Iraq's parliament -- two weeks after the original deadline.

But he said Iraqis will now get to decide whether or not to accept the constitution in the referendum, scheduled for 15 October.

In Iraq today, Sunnis again expressed displeasure with the draft.

Top negotiator Salih al-Mutlaq described the document as something "that will divide and tear apart Iraq."

His comments came as some 1,000 Sunni demonstrators marched in Tikrit to express their opposition to the draft.


For the latest news and analysis on Iraq, see RFE/RL's webpage on "The New Iraq".

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