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Biden Urges Iraq Leaders To End Postelection Deadlock

Iraqi President Jalal Talabani meets with U.S. Vice President Joe Biden.
U.S. Vice President Joe Biden has urged Iraqi leaders to put aside their differences and form a government four months after elections resulted in a political deadlock.

Biden, on the third and final day of a surprise visit to Iraq, today held talks with President Jalal Talabani.

Before the talks, Talabani told journalists in Baghdad, "I think that among important issues that we will discuss are current situation in Iraq, efforts to solve impasse here, and the U.S.-Iraqi ties after the withdrawal of the American troops from Iraq."

On July 4, he met with Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki and former Prime Minister Iyad Allawi.

Allawi's secular Al-Iraqiyah bloc narrowly defeated Maliki's Shi'ite-led State of Law alliance in the March 7 elections, and both men are now seeking to form a majority in parliament to take power.

compiled from agency reports