Saturday, January 12, 2008
U.S. President George W Bush has praised a new law in Iraq that will allow former members of Saddam Hussein's Baath party to return to public life. Mr. Bush called it an important step towards national reconciliation. The Baath party, formed mainly from Iraq's Sunni minority, was declared illegal after the US-led invasion of the country in 2003.
The U.S.had been urging Iraq's Shia-led government to approve the move in a bid to reach out to minority Sunni Arabs. The new law will allow thousands of former party members to apply for reinstatement in the civil service and military. "It's an important step toward reconciliation, it's an important sign that the leaders of that country understand that they must work together to meet the aspirations of the Iraqi people," said Mr. Bush.