Iraq: opposition assails pact with US

Both Sunni and Shi’ite opposition groups are criticizing the “declaration of principles” on long-term ties signed by US and Iraqi leaders Nov. 26, charging it would lead to “US interference for years to come.” The Iraqi parliament will have to approve the agreement signed separately by President Bush and Prime Minister Nouri Maliki on Monday. The agreement sets a July 31, 2008 target date to formalize US-Iraq relations beyond the expiration of the renewable UN mandate authorizing the presence of US-led multinational forces in Iraq. The Sunni Association of Muslim Scholars said the Iraqi signatories would be looked on a “collaborators with the occupier.” (BBC, Nov. 27)

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