Iraqi officials say U.S. and British diplomats are urging them to break an impasse and come to an agreement on a draft constitution by Monday's extended deadline.
Iraqis involved in the constitutional talks said Thursday that international pressure is mounting on negotiators to resolve issues, including the role of Islam in the state and power-sharing between the central and regional governments.
The United States is hopeful that a consensus on the constitution will help stem insurgent violence. Wednesday, three closely coordinated car bombings killed 43 people in Baghdad. Thursday, a judge and his driver were gunned down on a Baghdad street, and the U.S. military reported four of its soldiers were killed in a roadside bomb blast in Samarra, north of the capital.
Some information for this report provided by AFP and Reuters.