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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Iraq's Shi'ite Politicians Fail Again to End Political Standoff

11 April 2006

Shi'ite politicians in Iraq have failed once again to agree on their candidate for prime minister, which is blocking the formation of a new government.

Leaders of parties in the Shi'ite United Iraqi Alliance met Tuesday in Baghdad to discuss the fate of Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari. After the meeting broke off, officials said they would try again Wednesday to resolve the issue.

Tuesday's talks came one day after Sunni Arab and Kurdish leaders again rejected the nomination of Mr. Jaafari to keep his post in the country's next government.

An official with Fadhila, one of the Shi'ite parties told reporters Tuesday his group is ready to propose another candidate if the alliance cannot secure Mr. Jaafari's nomination.

Shi'ite leaders have been trying to form a government since winning December's elections, but differences over Mr. Jaafari have stalled progress. Kurdish and Sunni Arab leaders say Mr. Jaafari has not done enough to ease sectarian violence.

Deadly attacks continued Tuesday when a bomb exploded on a small bus in Baghdad's Sadr City area, killing three passengers and wounding at least three others.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.

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