Iraqi PM intends to bring up Lebanon conflict on visit to U.S.

BAGHDAD (CNN) — Iraq’s prime minister, whose country is mired in Sunni-Shiite sectarian fighting and a relentless insurgent violence, wants to put another conflict on his busy agenda next week when he meets with the Bush administration and other officials — Lebanon.

Nuri al-Maliki — who spoke to reporters in a press conference after the first meeting of the Higher Commission for Dialogue and National Reconciliation — said he will discuss the conflict with the United Nations and the U.S. government during his trip.

Al-Maliki said he will urge the speeding up of a cease-fire and the implementation of International resolutions.

“We have a new and dangerous issue: the military and security situation that came as a result of the Israeli attacks and raids on Lebanon and the destruction of infrastructure and the bombing of water, electricity and airports and what the Lebanese people are living and how it could affect the situation in the region,” al-Maliki said.

Al-Maliki, noting that the trip had been planned for some time, said the Iraqi delegation will be focused on the importance of building of Iraqi security forces and security that “would lead to reconstruction, rebuilding and services.” (Posted 8:30 a.m.)

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