BBC NEWS Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific Arabic Persian Pashto Turkish French
BBCi NEWS   SPORT   WEATHER   WORLD SERVICE   A-Z INDEX     

BBC News World Edition
 You are in: Middle East  
News Front Page
Africa
Americas
Asia-Pacific
Europe
Middle East
South Asia
UK
Business
Entertainment
Science/Nature
Technology
Health
-------------
Talking Point
-------------
Country Profiles
In Depth
-------------
Programmes
-------------
BBC Sport
BBC Weather
SERVICES
-------------
LANGUAGES
EDITIONS
Tuesday, 26 November, 2002, 15:58 GMT
Emigres discuss 'change' in Baghdad
Iraqi men stand underneath a portrait of Saddam Hussein in Baghdad
Saddam's recent overtures have been dismissed as a ploy

A group of Iraqi opposition figures is in Iraq for talks with the government about the possibility of change and a new constitution.

Saddam Hussein (left) with his younger son Qusay
Saddam's son Qusay (R) rumoured to be planning an inclusive government
Iraqi President Saddam Hussein has ruled the country with an iron fist since 1979.

But members of the little-known Iraqi National Alliance are now in Baghdad - the first dissidents to respond to a call by the Iraqi president for exiles to return.

The opposition figures have met Iraq's number two, Ezzat Ibrahim, and are hoping to meet with President Saddam.

'Promise for change'

Abdul Jabbar el-Qubaysi, chairman of the group, said they had been promised that a new constitution would be drawn and that new political parties would be allowed as well as independent newspapers.

Mr el-Qubaysi fled Iraq in 1976. His two brothers were executed in the early 1980s.

He said he was not afraid to return because he believed the government's promise for real change.

There have been rumours that the Iraqi president's son, Qusay, was planning to form a new government that would include independent and opposition figures.

But Mr el-Qubaysi said he and his colleagues would not agree to participate in any government and would remain in the opposition.

Saddam Hussein's recent political overtures have been denounced abroad as a ploy.

Iraqi dissidents say the Iraqi leadership is trying to enlist support from opposition figures in exile.

The opposition figures now in Baghdad have maintained some ties with the Iraqi regime over the years and would therefore be willing to return to Iraq and show support for the Iraqi president at this crucial time.


Key stories

Analysis

CLICKABLE GUIDE

BBC WORLD SERVICE

AUDIO VIDEO

TALKING POINT
See also:

26 Nov 02 | Middle East
16 Oct 02 | Middle East
11 Oct 02 | Middle East
10 Sep 02 | Middle East
06 Sep 02 | Archive
04 Oct 02 | Middle East
03 Oct 02 | Media reports
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more Middle East stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Middle East stories

© BBC ^^ Back to top

News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East |
South Asia | UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature |
Technology | Health | Talking Point | Country Profiles | In Depth |
Programmes