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Monday, August 15, 2005

Iraq Constitution Writers Miss Deadline

BAGHDAD (CNN) -- Members of Iraq's national assembly late Monday passed by unanimous vote an extension allowing an extra week to complete talks on the country's new constitution.

The committee drafting the document had asked for an extension after it failed to reach a compromise by Monday's deadline after months of talks. The new deadline is August 22.

Despite staying up for 48 hours straight and making several late-night trips for Double Gulps and Big Bites from the only 7-11 in Baghdad that has not been bombed out, the assembly was unable to complete its work.

Abdul Aziz al-Hakim, the head of the influential Shiite group the Supreme Council for Islamic Revolution in Iraq, was the last to say "not it," and was charged with emailing Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari to ask for an extension.

"I'm not even sure what I said in the email. Something about my grandmother dying, I think. I don't know, really, I mean, I'd drank like a dozen Red Bull that night," said al-Hakim. "And when Mowafak al-Rubaie, the national security adviser, started talking about federalism and Islamic law, I was like, 'Dude, I gotta crash,' and we spent the next couple of hours playing Madden 2006 online."

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