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Al-Sadr set to rejoin government
Muqtada al-Sadr, the Iraqi Shia cleric, has agreed to allow his supporters to rejoin the Iraqi government after a three-week boycott.
The cleric pulled out of the government three weeks ago to protest against the Iraqi prime minister's meeting with George Bush, the US President, officials close to the militia leader said late on Thursday.
"The main [United Iraqi] Alliance forces and the al-Sadr movement have agreed to solve the problems and overcome the obstacles," said Abdul Karim al-Anizi, a Shia MP from the Dawa faction.
"Within two days, the al-Sadr movement will return to the government and parliament," he said.
Al-Sadr loyalists walked out of their positions in parliament and the cabinet after Nouri al-Maliki, the Iraqi prime minister, met Bush in Jordan three weeks ago.
Two figures in al-Sadr's movement, an aide to the cleric and a member of Iraq's parliament, also said the cleric had agreed to allow his followers to rejoin the government.
"We will rejoin the government and the parliament very soon," the parliament member said, speaking on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of ongoing meetings.
"We have some guarantees during our meeting today," he said.