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Iraqi PM: Most Constitutional Issues Resolved

Iraq's interim Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari says almost all key issues delaying a draft constitution have been resolved.

Mr. Jaafari spoke Tuesday in Baghdad as negotiators scrambled to reach agreement on key points left unresolved in the draft presented to parliament late Monday. Lawmakers have extended the deadline for parliamentary approval to Thursday.

Officials say issues of federalism and the division of authority between the presidency and parliament remain unresolved.

Majority Shi'ites and the Kurds are seeking a decentralized government that allows significant regional autonomy in the Kurdish north and Shi'ite southern Iraq.

Sunnis, who have not signed off on the draft, want a centralized government seen as protecting their minority interests in central Iraq.

Meanwhile, authorities say Iraq's Environment Minister Narmin Othman survived an assassination attempt Monday, when gunmen attacked her convoy north of Baghdad. Three bodyguards were wounded.

A U.S. soldier was killed during a rocket attack in Baghdad.