BAGHDAD — Kurdish and Shiite Muslim leaders agreed Monday to convene Iraq's new parliament this week even if they fail to iron out some of the wrinkles in their deal to form a coalition government.
Shiite officials said they had also agreed to reach out to the country's Sunni Muslim community to name the parliamentary speaker for the 275-member National Assembly, which convenes Wednesday.
The Shiite-dominated United Iraqi Alliance and a Kurdish coalition, which won the two largest blocs of seats in the Jan. 30 elections, agreed last week to form a coalition government with Islamic Dawa Party leader Ibrahim Jafari as prime minister. In return, Jalal Talabani will become Iraq's first Kurdish president.
"We discussed the blueprint of the agreement reached Thursday. Some issues were revised and those revisions are still being discussed," alliance member Ali Dabagh said.
Dabagh expressed optimism that a final deal would be reached soon.