Iraqi Prime Minister Demands US Pullout Timetable

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The New York Sun

BAGHDAD — Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki says there can be no security agreement with America unless there is a “specific deadline” for the withdrawal of American troops.

Mr. Al-Maliki also says that unless some clauses in the draft agreement under discussion are changed, it will be “difficult” for the pact to be adopted. He did not identify all those clauses.

But the prime minister told tribal leaders today that he cannot grant “open immunity” to Iraqis or foreigners because that would violate the “sanctity of Iraqi blood.”

Baghdad and Washington are negotiating an agreement on the future of American troops in Iraq. Mr. Al-Maliki’s aides say Iraq insists on 2011 as the target date for the withdrawal of the last American soldier.

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