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Annan Arrives in Baghdad as Car Bomb Rocks Iraqi Capital

United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan made a surprise visit to Iraq Saturday, arriving just as a bomb ripped through a market in the capital, killing at least five people.

Mr. Annan held a news conference with Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari after the two met in Baghdad. He expressed support for a national reconciliation conference proposed by the Arab League to be held in Cairo, saying reconciliation is "absolutely vital" for Iraq.

This is Mr. Annan's first visit to the country since U.S.-led forces ousted Saddam Hussein in April, 2003.

On Friday, U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice visited Iraq, and also urged Iraqis to set aside sectarian differences and participate in next month's parliamentary elections.

Some information for this report provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.