February 2 Events in Iraq
Washington. US Congress permits the Pentagon to hire foreign troops for special operations.
Baghdad. Prime Minister Iyad Allawi annnounced the opening of a dialog with Iraqi Sunnis to insure their participation in the political process.
Baghdad. Only 11,000 ballots have been counted in the last 24 hours by the Election Commission. Moreover, only one-third of the ballot boxes have arrived in Baghad, where they will be counted inside the Green Zone. Elections Commission Chairman Abdel Hussein al-Hindawi, says the vote count will be complete in 3 days, but this is highly unlikely. [At this rate, it will take months to produce a vote count--Nur].
23:35 Baghdad. US claims rebel leader killed. Ali Mohammad, aka Ahmed Jalil, a lieutenant of Abu Musab al Zarqawi was killed by US marines on 25 January near Fallujah.
21:34 Kirkuk. 12 Iraqi soliders die during guerrilla raid.
19:44 Baghdad. Allawi initiates dialog with Committee of Iraqi Ulema.
16:28 London. Italian Foreign Minister Gianfranco Fini repeats that the Italian contingent will stay in Iraq until asked to leave by the Iraqi government.
15:19 Dubai. Web site linked to al Zarqawi demands vengence for slaying of inmates. Four Iraqi detainees were killed in Camp Bucca by US prison guards during a prison uprising. A group linked to Abu Mussab al Zarqawi demands vengence.
12:52 New York. CIA cannot withhold document on prisoners. A New York court refused to modify an order forcing the CIA to obey the provisions of the 'Freedom of Information Act' in releasing documents held on prisoners interned by the US in Guantanamo.
12:10 Najaf. Shi'ite leader escapes assassination. Sheik Khaled Numani, heaqd of SCIRI for the Province of Najaf, escaped assassination along the highway between Kufa and Najaf when insurgents opened fire on his car.
11:20 Ramallah. Abu Mazen to visit Teheran. Abu Mazen has accepted an official invitation to visit Teheran.
07:00 Washington. Rice discounts exit strategy. Condoleezza Rice says the US should not be thinking in terms of an exit strategy from Iraq.