U.N. ready to help in Iraqi political rows

Jan. 5, 2012 at 10:39 AM
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BAGHDAD, Jan. 5 (UPI) -- The United Nations' mission in Iraq is ready to help build trust among Iraqi political leaders locked in bitter rows after the U.S. withdrawal, an envoy said.

Martin Kobler, the U.N. special envoy to Iraq, met with Iraqi President Jalal Talabani and later with Kurdish leaders to discuss political feuds in the country.

Iraq's Shiite Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki wants Vice President Tariq al-Hashemi arrested on terrorism charges. The row brought matters at the Iraqi Council of Representatives to a standstill after members of the Sunni-backed Iraqiya slate suspended participation.

Kobler said the best course of action was through meaningful dialogue and compromise.

"(Kobler) assured all his interlocutors of the readiness of the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq to support Iraqi leaders' efforts to promote confidence and trust among the parties at this important juncture in the history of Iraq," a statement issued through his spokesman's office read.

Some Kurdish lawmakers and members of the Iraqiya slate returned to Baghdad for a legislative session Thursday, the Voices of Iraq news agency said. Talks early this week were upended after Iraqiya leaders wanted to discuss the Hashemi case.

The news agency reports at least 30 people were killed in a suicide attack in southern Dhi Qhar province Thursday. Several others were killed in attacks on Baghdad.

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