Focus on Elections in Iraq
Al-Hayat: An official spokesman for the Da`wa Party said Saturday that its political office had put forward Ibrahim Jafari as a candidate for president of Iraq. At the same time, the United Iraqi Alliance, of which Da`wa is one member, announced that it would insist on having the prime ministership. The UIA will probably dominate the new parliament, and is announcing that UN- and US- appointed interim PM Iyad Allawi will not continue in the post. Jafari points out that it would be undemocratic to have him continue, because his list has only about a fourth the votes that the UIA got.
Another leading contender for president is Jalal Talabani, a Kurdish leader.
Jafari told the Independent that he would try to bring radical cleric Muqtada al-Sadr into the government.
Edward Wong of the New York Times illuminates the negotiations on the issue of the role of religion in the New Iraq.
Meanwhile, guerilla actions all over the country left 22 dead, including two US troops.