US and British Ambassadors Persuade Allawi to Attend Leaders’ Meeting- Sources
London, Asharq Al-Awsat – Sources close to Iraqiya bloc leader Iyad Allawi have revealed that “he had previously decided not to participate in the meeting of the political blocs’ leaders which was held the day before yesterday under the initiative of Kurdistan Region President Massoud Barzani because he knew beforehand that it would not reach real results with regards to the points raised by the Iraqiya bloc.”
They also pointed out that Allawi took part in yesterday’s meeting which took place at Barzani’s house inside the fortified Green Zone in Baghdad and that “he left the meeting three hours later because of a prior commitment and would return [to the meeting] later.” These sources told Asharq al-Awsat by telephone from Baghdad that Allawi “received a telephone call from [Kurdistan Region] President Barzani yesterday morning before the meeting and also met separately with the British and American ambassadors to Baghdad. Both ambassadors underlined the importance of the Iraqiya bloc’s strong participation in the next government and that forming a government that did not include the Iraqiya bloc was out of the question.”
These sources also talked about what went on between the US Senate delegation led by Republican Senator John McCain which visited Baghdad on Tuesday and the Iraqiya bloc leaders. The sources revealed that “the US delegation stressed that the United States did not sacrifice thousands of its sons in Iraq for the sake of a government being formed in accordance with an Iranian agenda, sacrificing the democracy achieved in the country.”
The sources said that the US delegation revealed that it had delivered the same message to President Barzani and that “President Barack Obama was dismayed by the delay in the formation of a government in Iraq because some were clinging to their posts, sacrificing the achievements made by the Iraqis thanks to the sacrifices of the Iraqi and American soldiers.” They expressed their regret that some Iraqi politicians were thinking of sacrificing their relations with the United States and Arab countries – in reference to the negative response of some [Iraqi] blocs to the initiative made by the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah Bin Abdulaziz – for the sake of limited regional relations and remaining in their posts, in a veiled reference to some Iraqi political parties connection with Iran. These sources also denied that any senior members of the Iraqiya bloc had thought of supporting Nouri al-Maliki, the State of Law coalition leader and prime minister of the outgoing government, for a second term in office in return for positions within his government.