updated 1/26/2005 7:30:11 PM ET 2005-01-27T00:30:11

NBC News and MSNBC will present extended live coverage of the Iraqi election beginning Thursday, Jan. 27 through Sunday, Jan. 30 when the voting booths open, and as the results come in.

“NBC Nightly News” anchor and managing editor Brian Williams will travel to Baghdad, Iraq to cover that nation’s elections.  Williams and the team of “Nightly News” correspondents will look at the current political situation in Iraq, the candidates, the violence, the terror ringleaders and the hope and fears for Iraq’s future.  Beginning tonight, Williams will anchor “Nightly News” from Amman, Jordan and then from Baghdad starting Thursday.  Williams will also report for other NBC News and MSNBC programs.  Also reporting from Iraq will be NBC News’ Campbell Brown, Richard Engel, Jim Maceda, Charles Sabine, Mark Mullen and Michelle Caruso-Cabrera.

NBC News’ “Today” (7-10 a.m.) will offer comprehensive coverage leading up to the Iraqi election.  NBC News’ Williams, along with a wealth of NBC News correspondents, will report live from the region.  “Weekend Today” co-host Campbell Brown will be co-anchoring the Saturday, Jan. 29 and Sunday, Jan. 30 broadcasts live from Baghdad.

MSNBC will cover the days counting down to the election, starting Thursday, Jan. 27 with a special hour anchored by Campbell Brown from Baghdad, “MSNBC Special Report: Iraq Votes,” 9-10 p.m. (ET), with reports from correspondents and analysts from around the region.  Coverage continues Friday, Jan. 28, with live coverage throughout the day and primetime. 

On Sunday, Jan. 30, MSNBC will present continuing live coverage starting at 2 a.m. (ET) through 10 p.m. (ET), with guests including MSNBC military analysts Col. Jack Jacobs, Lt. Col. Rick Francona, Gen. Montgomery Meigs, Gen. Barry McCaffrey, MSNBC terrorism experts Juliette Kaayem and Walid Phares, Iraq expert Nimrod Raphaeli and former election monitor Tom Melia.  MSNBC will also talk to Iraqi expatriates in the U.S., who will be casting their absentee ballots here and closely watching the election results. 

6-8 p.m. (ET), MSNBC presents a special edition of “Hardball with Chris Matthews,” with guests including former U.S. intelligence official Patrick Lang, MSNBC military analyst William Arkin and former Presidential speechwriter David Frum.  “Countdown with Keith Olbermann” follows, 8-9 p.m. (ET), followed by a special “Scarborough Country,” 9-10 p.m. (ET).

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