"Weapons of Mass Deception"


Ahmed Chalabi vying for Iraq PM's post

Agence France-Presse
Washington, February 14, 2005

Iraq's Ahmed Chalabi, once supported by the United States only to fall from favour, on Sunday said that he is vying to become his country's Prime Minister, following the formal announcement of election results there.

"I am nominated for position of prime minister. And I will work with my colleagues to win this position," Chalabi, a Shia, told CNN television.

To the anger of anti-Iran hardliners within the government, Chalabi - the leading Iraqi cheerleader for the 2003 US-led invasion of Iraq - was a candidate on a ticket with Iran-backed Shiite religious parties, despite his secular views.

He deemed his chances of gaining the prime minister's post as fairly good.
"I'm supported by many of the winners in the United Iraqi Alliance," he said.

Chalabi, who fell out of favour in Washington over US accusations that he had been passing top-secret US intelligence assessments to neighbouring Iran, has long been dogged by allegations of corruption and was convicted by a Jordan court for embezzling funds from the collapsed Petra bank.

Asked if Chalabi is acceptable politically to Iraqi Kurds, Deputy Prime Minister Barham Saleh, said: "We will be dealing with whomever will be nominated to this position, based on policy issues and based on solid guarantees that they will remain true to the ideals of democracy... Working on the constitutional process and being committed to the rule of law and justice in Iraq.,001301600004.htm

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Milton Frihetsson, 19:23


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