updated 6/27/2006 11:47:14 AM ET 2006-06-27T15:47:14

Iraq’s deputy prime minister met secretly with exiled Sunni leaders to win their support for national reconciliation and to try to quell the insurgency, community leaders said Tuesday.

Salam Zikam Ali al-Zubaie met with several sheiks from the volatile Anbar province — an insurgent stronghold — before Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki unveiled a 24-point national reconciliation plan earlier this week.

That initiative offered amnesty to insurgents who renounce violence and have not committed terrorist attacks.

The three-day meetings in the Jordanian capital, which ended Saturday, focused on “efforts for reaching national reconciliation and asserted the need that all sides must cooperate to achieve a civil peace, especially in Anbar,” said Abdul-Latif Hemayem, one of the sheiks who attended the secret meetings.

“Mr. Al-Zubaie was eloquent and had clear ideas on how Anbar, as a very important province in Iraq, should engage in the political process,” Hemayem told The Associated Press in an interview.

He declined to spell out the ideas, saying they were in a “preliminary phase.”

© 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Discussion comments


Most active discussions

  1. votes comments
  2. votes comments
  3. votes comments
  4. votes comments