Iraqi Interim government off to a rocky start

(Baghdad, Iraq-AP) -- The national conference to pick Iraq's new government is being delayed by about a month. Officials had hoped an interim government could be in place by early June. But U-S civilian administrator Paul Bremer says the conference of Iraqi political figures probably will be held in mid-July. The U-S has held two large conferences, hosting scores of Iraqi political figures for talks on what form the interim government should take. But exactly how and when that will be done has never been stated specifically. Bremer adds that U-S officials are meeting with Iraqis every day and says the coalition's goal is to establish a government representing all of the country's social, religious and ethnic groups. So, how long will U-S forces remain in Iraq? Bremer says as long as they're needed -- but no longer than they have to be there.

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