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Archive for Wednesday, April 5, 2006

Iraqi vice president joins call for P.M. to step down

April 5, 2006

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— An Iraqi vice president called Tuesday for the embattled Shiite prime minister to step aside so a new government can be formed, becoming the most senior Shiite official publicly to endorse demands for a leadership change to halt the slide toward civil war.

Vice President Adil Abdul-Mahdi told the British Broadcasting Corp. that he met with Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari on Monday and urged him to give up the nomination for a second term because he had lost the confidence of the Sunnis and Kurds.

But Abdul-Mahdi said al-Jaafari refused, insisting he wanted to take his case to parliament, which must approve the new prime minister and his Cabinet by a majority vote.

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