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Rumsfeld warns Iraqi government to avoid corruption, political purges

[JURIST] Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld [official profile; JURIST news archive] on Tuesday warned Iraqi interim leaders to avoid political purgings that could lead to corruption in the government in the wake of its recent formation. He also urged the government to push forward in drafting a constitution for Iraq [JURIST news archive], with an August deadline fast approaching. Rumsfeld, who made the comments as he traveled to Iraq [Defense Department news report] for an unannounced visit, said he was concerned that Shiite and Kurdish leaders might dismiss Sunnis from government ministries in favor of their own party members. Newly named Prime Minister Ibrahim Jaafari [BBC News profile] said challenges existed for the government, but he maintained that politicians would be able to cooperate. Leaders have gotten off to a slow start following the January elections, spending most of February and March attempting to form a government. Reuters has more.

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