TV: Talabani threatens with resignation against efforts to change his mind
BAGHDAD, June 15 (AKnews)- Iraqi President Jalal Talabani warned that if the parties keep on trying to change his position with regard to Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki's issue, he will resign, Arabic al-Hurra TV reported.
The US-funded TV said that Talabani's warning came in a letter in response to a written demand by a number of leaders, including Iraqiya List Leader Ayad Allawi, Kurdistan Region's President Massoud Barzani and Sadr Current Leader Muqtada al-Sadr.
The leaders allegedly asked the president to order the House of Representatives take action to withdraw confidence from PM, whom Allawi, Barzani and Sadr described as a "dictator."
The TV which claimed it has obtained a copy of the letter said that Talabani has asked the leaders to stop "provoking and accusing" him and warned he will resign should they try to change his mind.
The president allegedly said that his position with regard to this issue is appropriate with his post as the president of the country.
He stressed that he did not sign a similar letter against Maliki by his advisor Fakhri Kareem with and will not allow for any MPs from his Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) to side such efforts.
According to the letter, Talabani has also underlined that in the first meeting in Erbil he verbally supported the threat of withdrawing confidence from PM as a "pressure card.
"If National Alliance or Maliki refused to comply with the principles …and former agreements, I would demand the House of Representatives to withdraw confidence [from PM]."
"The focus was on the urgency of implementing former political agreements and future demands [by Maliki] … but you changed the whole subject to withdrawing confidence," Talabani told the leaders who were sent the letter.
Allawi, Sadr and Barzani as well as House Speaker Osama al-Nujaifi met with Talabani in Erbil April 28 and through a letter to the NA, demanded Maliki stop acting "unilaterally" and commit to the constitution and agreements.
The leaders met three more times and demanded NA replace Maliki.
Maliki rejected the violation charges against himself. NA also stressed it will hold on to Maliki as its sole candidate for PM post and invited the parties for negotiations.
After efforts with NA reached a deadlock, the MPs launched a signature campaign to withdraw confidence from Maliki inside the House. There were reports that more than 164 MPs (the legal number) have voted against PM.
Upon a request from Maliki, Talabani formed a committee to investigate the reports.
In his letter to leaders, Talabani said that initially only 160 MPs voted against Maliki.
Talabani wrote. "when we formed the committee we received telegraphs and phone calls from MPs who demanded to withdraw their signatures.
"If we collect and present the signatures, there will be only 145 votes."
Talabani renewed his call for the parties to meet for negotiations.
"If the NA and the PM refused to comply with the earlier agreements and demands, then I will withdraw the confidence without any need to MPs' signatures," Talabani wrote.