Allawi opens fire on Iran

Special report, Thursday 25 Nov 2010

Iraqiya bloc leader Iyad Allawi assured that work proceeds in accordance with the promises made to him.

In a full page interview with the Saudi daily Asharq Al-Awsat, Iyad Allawi spoke about the Iraqiya bloc's new agenda in which he pledged to fight Iran's influence in Iraqi politics asserting that Tehran had strongly intervened to support Nouri Al-Maliki's bid for another term.

"We directly informed Iran through regional leaders that we are not against Iran, neither are we calling for war," said Allawi.

"But at the same time, we refuse any Iranian intervention in Iraqi internal affairs," he asserted.

Allawi considers Saudi Arabia's initiative, to invite Iraqi leaders to deliberate in Riyadh under the umbrella of the Arab League, an effective way to achieve national reconciliation.

He added that the Iraqi leaders could still take up the Saudi offer.

"It will be a long and hard battle," he told the daily, referring to the battle that will be fought against sectarianism and extremism.

When asked about relinquishing the bloc's right to form a government or take the presidency, he said that they did not relinquish their right to make political decisions. He attributed the decision to national and regional circumstances.

Allawi predicts Iraq's premier will still have a challenging time forming a new government. He expects that even after a government is appointed, decision-making will remain difficult due to the fragmented, vague and tenuous foundations.

Short link: