Iraq reconciliation conference date set

A much-anticipated conference aimed at stemming the cycle of sectarian violence in Iraq will take place on November 4, the government has said.

    The bloodshed in Iraq shows no sign of abating

    The meeting was originally scheduled to start on Friday, but had been indefinitely postponed for unspecified "emergency reasons," a statement said.

    The postponement reflected the effect the worsening violence has had on efforts to stabilise the government and end the bloodshed.

    The delay had threatened to damage the government of Nuri al-Maliki, the prime minister, which took office just over four months ago vowing to implement a 24-point national reconciliation plan.

    Continuing violence

    Wednesday's statement said the conference was postponed because of organisational problems, denying media reports suggesting the delay was caused by disputes over the gathering.

    Al-Maliki, the head of what is formally termed a national unity government, presented the national reconciliation plan within days of taking office in May, but has been unable to effectively implement any of its stipulations.

    In continuing violence in Iraq, a roadside bomb killed a provincial police intelligence chief in the south of the country

    early on Wednesday, police said.

    The bomb, planted on the main road between the cities of Amara and Basra, killed Ali Qassim al-Tamimi, and four bodyguards, Maysan police said.

    Elsewhere, local Sunni and Shia leaders met in an attempt to resolve the fate of more than 40 people missing since their 13-car convoy was stopped at a checkpoint on Sunday outside Balad, where almost 100 people were killed in five days of sectarian fighting.

    Police said the hijacked cars had been diverted to the nearby Shia area of al-Nebaiyi on Balad's outskirts.

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Trump's Middle East plan: Decoding a century of failed deals

    Trump's Middle East plan: Decoding a century of failed deals

    Al Jazeera read all 181 pages of 'the deal of the century', comparing its language with 100 years of failed agreements.

    We foreigners: What it means to be Bengali in India's Assam

    We foreigners: What it means to be Bengali in India's Assam

    As tensions over India's citizenship law shine a light on Assam, a writer explores the historical tensions in the state.

    Sentenced to death for blasphemy: Surviving Pakistan's death row

    Sentenced to death for blasphemy: Surviving Pakistan's death row

    The story of a man who spent 19 years awaiting execution reveals the power of a false blasphemy claim to destroy a life.