Iraq's deputy premier called Friday for Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki to step down and warned that the country's festering political crisis risks sparking a wider sectarian conflict in the region.
Sunni Deputy Prime Minister Saleh al-Mutlaq stood by an earlier charge that Iraq is becoming a new dictatorship under al-Maliki, a Shiite. He said Iraqis could eventually rise up violently if al-Maliki remains in his post, and pushed for a vote of no confidence in the prime minister if he remains in office.
"The longer al-Maliki stays in power, the higher the possibility of a divided Iraq," al-Mutlaq said during an interview at his office in Baghdad's heavily fortified Green Zone
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