Sunnis must participate in Iraq polls: Powell
An Iraqi election, which fails to provide sufficient representation for the Sunni Muslim minority would be a victory for the country's insurgents, US Secretary of State Colin Powell said.
Powell made his remarks in a radio interview on Thursday as US officials grappled with the credibility of the January 30 polls threatened by violence, intimidation and a boycott by the largest Sunni party.
The outgoing chief US diplomat forecast "large turnouts" in areas controlled by the majority Shiite Muslims and by Kurds, but was unable to predict how many Sunnis would brave the danger to cast their ballots for a national assembly.
"I think the Sunnis want to have an opportunity to speak, with respect to how they wish to be led," he told PBS radio.
"And so I think a successful election will be an election where most of the population get a chance to vote."