Following are excerpts from an interview with former Iraqi MP Ayad Jamal Al-Din, which aired on Al-Arabiya TV on November 5, 2010:
Ayad Jamal Al-Din: [Saudi King Abdullah's] initiative is a lifeline for the entire political process in Iraq. We are at a political impasse in Iraq. We are in a deadlock in that respect. All this talk about a new government being formed soon, and solving the problem, is nothing but media hype.
Interviewer: So you are not optimistic. Why?
Ayad Jamal Al-Din: I am not optimistic because Iraq is the focus of a regional struggle. There are regional problems, and Iraq is part of this region, which is besieged by the sword of Al-Qaeda in the south – in Pakistan, Afghanistan, Yemen, and Somalia – and in the north, by Iran and its new follower, Iraq, as well as Iran's allies and Lebanon.
The question is: Does it matter who fills which position? Does it matter if the president or prime minister is Kurdish, Shiite, or Sunni? Is this the problem? In my view, the goal should be liberating Iraq from the Iranian occupation, and preserving its unity, independence, and sovereignty.
We know there is an American occupation – even though I have strong reservations about this term – but we know the date on which this American occupation will end. According to the strategic agreement between Iraq and the US, by the end of 2011, not a single American soldier will remain on Iraqi soil.
As for the Iranian occupation, we have no idea when it will end. Iran does whatever it wants in Iraq. Therefore, I say that this kind invitation by the Saudi king should have been addressed to the Iranian leader [Khamenei]. He is in charge, because he is the Guardian of the Muslims, and especially of the Iraqis. The invitation should have been addressed to the Guardian of the Muslims, in order to convene the UN, the Arab League, and the Organization of the Islamic Conference, so they could negotiate with Iran about the extent of its occupation of Iraq, and about what Iran really wants from Iraq.
Interviewer: Do you think that Iraq is ready to demarcate its borders?
Ayad Jamal Al-Din: It is not a matter of borders. It is a matter of life and death.
I believe that Iran has occupied and colonized Iraq. The problem goes beyond the demarcation of borders or the forming of a government. The UN, the Arab League, the Organization of the Islamic Conference, the political powers in Iraq, and the Shiite religious authorities, who will be severely harmed by the application of the Rule of the Jurisprudent in Iraq, must all analyze the problem. The problem lies in the lack of balance in the region. The Iranian arrogance and the Iraqi self-degradation will be reflected in the issues of the borders, economy, politics, religion, and culture.