Good News For Code Pink! Condi Talks Troop Reductions in Iraq
This ought to cheer up antiwar Democrats and Code Pink activists.
Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki’s meeting with visiting U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice in Baghdad dealt with cutting the number of U.S. troops in Iraq, government spokesman Ali al-Dabbagh said.
“Rice expressed the U.S. administration’s relief over development of Iraq’s political process and the parliament’s efforts, particularly after the adoption of the accountability & justice draft law,” Dabbagh said in statements to reporters after the Maliki-Rice meeting on Tuesday.
The Iraqi parliament approved on Saturday the accountability & justice draft law by an overwhelming majority amidst rejection from four blocs.
The draft is an alternative to the debaathification law, enacted by former U.S. Civil Administrator Paul Bremer, who ruled Iraq after the fall of the former regime in April 2003.
Since it was first announced by Maliki in June 2007, the draft has been facing fierce opposition and several reservations, mostly from the Sadrists, who occupy 30 out of a total 275 seats in parliament.
Once the law is passed, about 30,000 Baathists, or members of the former ruling Baath Party, would be allowed to return to their original jobs and receive their retirement rights.
“Rice affirmed that U.S. President George W. Bush discussed with Arab countries the possibility of sustaining friendly ties between Iraq and the United States,” Dabbagh added.
Monsters and Critics also reported this good news:
US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, on a surprise visit to Baghdad on Tuesday, discussed US troop reduction with Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki, a government spokesman said.
‘Rice discussed with al-Maliki a possible reduction of the multinational troops in Iraq this year,’ Iraqi government spokesman, Ali al-Dabagh, told reporters after the talks.
Rice flew from Saudi Arabia, which US President George Bush is currently visiting as part of a regional tour of the Middle East.
Progress of the political process and reconciliation among Iraq’s sectarian and ethnic groups were also discussed, according to a cabinet statement.
Also today… Alsumaria reported that the Head of Al Anbar Awakening Council Ahmad Abu Risha warned of an early withdrawal of US Forces from Iraq.