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IraqSide:Developments
Diplomatic Buzz
Maliki Urges US to Talk with Iran, Syria
Says Bilateral Discussions Would Bolster "Stability of Iraq and the Region"
05/02/2007 6:09 PM ET
Iraqi PM Maliki and US Secretary of State Rice Meeting Today in Sharm El Sheik.
Photo by Mike Nelson AFP/Getty Images
Iraqi PM Maliki and US Secretary of State Rice Meeting Today in Sharm El Sheik.

Baghdad, May 2, (VOI)- Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki met on Wednesday the U.S. Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice in the Egyptian Sharm al-Sheikh resort urging her to make bilateral dialogue with Iraq neighboring countries for "the stability of Iraq and the region." "Premier Nouri al-Maliki met today at his residence in Sharm al-Sheikh met U.S. Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice," al-Maliki's office said in a statement received by the independent news agency Voices of Iraq (VOI). In the one and a half hour-long-meeting, "Maliki urged Rice to make bilateral dialogue with some Iraq neighboring countries for reaching results on the stability of Iraq and the region," the statement said. The statement quoted al-Maliki as saying "the two international conferences give a good opportunity for a dialogue and understanding among the participating states." More than 50 Arab, Asian and Western states as well as the United Nations, Organization of Islamic Countries and Arab League are taking part in the conferences of UN Pact with Iraq and Iraq neighboring countries. The statement added "al-Maliki said that a strong Iraq is a factor of stability in the region...And he is wrong who thinks that a weak Iraq will be in his benefit." Al-Maliki arrived on Wednesday in Egypt heading a large delegation to take part in the two conferences on Iraq due to start on 3-4 May.
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