Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Sunni bloc may boycott vote on US pact

Press TV reports:

The main Sunni-Arab bloc in the Iraqi Parliament threatens to boycott a parliament session to vote on the Iraq-US security agreement.

"The IAF would not enter the parliament if there was no popular referendum over the agreement or assurances from the US side," Abdelkareem al-Samarraie, a leading lawmaker from the Iraqi Accord Front (IAF), told the Voices of Iraq on Tuesday.

The lawmaker said parliament should postpone voting on the deal, since every one agrees how serious the pact is. The Parliament is to put the pact to a vote on Wednesday.

Earlier, the bloc's leader, Adnan al-Dulaimi, had said the agreement, which is endorsed by the Iraqi cabinet, should be put to the public in a referendum.

Vice President Tareq al-Hashemi also called on the country's politicians not to make any 'hasty' decision on the agreement, which is the most challenging issue facing Iraq since the overthrow of the Saddam regime in 2003.

Under the deal the US would be allowed to stay three more years in Iraq after its UN mandate expires in December 31.