British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw and U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice address the U.K. media on Apr. 1. Rice and Straw left England shortly thereafter for their unannounced trip to Iraq. It is Rice’s first trip to the area since November, whereas Straw was last there five weeks ago.
The secretary of state and U.K. Foreign Secretary Jack Straw drop in on Baghdad unannounced—ostensibly to urge government unity, but in all likelihood to try to force the Iraqi prime minister out of his post.
BAGHDAD, Iraq, April 2—Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw flew here together Sunday on an unannounced visit and made a dramatic appeal to feuding Iraqi politicians to quickly form a national unity government before the country fractures further along sectarian lines.
After a day of meetings with political figures that stretched into the evening, Rice said she was “very direct” that “the Iraqi people are losing patience” and “your international allies want to see this get done because you can’t continue to leave a political vacuum.”