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Najaf Overshadows Iraqi Conference

Protests over fighting in Najaf cloud the opening of a Baghdad conference to choose an interim national assembly. Shiite demands for Iraqi officials to resume truce talks with militia loyal to radical cleric Muqtada al-Sadr prompt the delegates to issue a call for Sadr's gunmen to abandon the shrine of the Imam Ali. Hear NPR's Ivan Watson.

Copyright 2004 NPR

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Ivan Watson
Ivan Watson is currently based in Istanbul, Turkey. Following the 9-11 terrorist attacks, he has served as one of NPR's foreign "firemen," shuttling to and from hotspots around the Middle East and Central Asia.