RealNews

Iraqis mediate in US-Sadr fight

As US forces fought with militia loyal to firebrand Iraqi cleric Moqtada al-Sadr, group of Iraqi leaders an offer that may hold the best hope of solving the month-long standoff between his Mahdi army militia and the US military. The deal, offered by tribal and religious leaders without any American input, offers Sadr a chance to save face by giving himself up to Iraqis instead of to American forces. In exchange, the group will negotiate its own demands with both Sadr and American forces, including withdrawal from Najaf and information about Iraqi prisoners being held by the coalition. “It’s an attempt to solve the legal question, and not just the security question,” said Sheikh Fatih Kashif al-Ghitta, a top advisor to Iraqi Governing Council member Salama al-Khafaji. “And to solve it in a way that doesn’t humiliate Sayyid Moqtada, that doesn’t humiliate the Iraqi people, and that doesn’t humiliate the Americans.” Full Story

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