Iraq Rules Out Non-Sovereign Pact with US

By Prensa Latina,

Baghdad : Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Al-Maliki asserted on Monday that his country would sign an agreement with the United States, only if they guarantee full sovereignty and a schedule for the occupying troops’ withdrawal.

Support TwoCircles

Speaking at a lecture in Baghdad, the head of government highlighted that there is significant progress in the negotiations with Washington, for which they defined as long-term security agreement, which includes withdrawal of the US troops by late 2011.

“Iraq will not assume any agreement or treaty based on the presence of a single foreign soldier on Iraqi land, and without establishing a specific period for the foreign troop withdrawal,” he said.

Al-Maliki recognized that there are pending complex issues to define in the negotiations, as granting non-limited immunity to the US troops, but he asserted that the agreement does not have secret appendixes.

Open immunity can not be granted to any person, nor Iraqi, neither foreign people, he remarked.

He said there is not consensus either between Washington and Baghdad in relation to the presence of the troops, their movements in the country and the number of military bases.

Although withdrawal of the US units has been scheduled for 2011, they would not be allowed to carry out military missions without proper authorization by the Iraqi government, during the period they remain in this Arab nation, he said.

Meanwhile, official sources reported that a police agent died on Monday, shot by unknown people in the al-Majmoua al-Thaqafiya area, in the northern city of Mosul.

Other reports confirmed the death of 21 police agents and members of the Sahwa Councils, groups with tribal leadership, supported by the government to fight the rebels.

The victims were taken by surprise on Sunday night in a banquet in the Abu Ghraib locality, around 19 miles west from Baghdad, when a suicidal attacker exploded a bomb he was carrying, causing injuries to 32 other people.