Iraq's president said in remarks aired Friday that the country could have been more successful in ending the insurgency and sectarian violence if it had received full support from Iran and Syria.
President Jalal Talabani also said that Iran's influence on Shiite militias in Iraq could be used to help end sectarian violence between Sunnis and Shiites. He was apparently referring to the Mahdi Army militia of radical Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr.
"Had we been able to gain Syria and Iran on Iraq's side in fighting terrorism, the mission of wiping out terrorism would have been 70 percent easier," Talabani told the Dubai-based Al-Arabiya television. "The second point is that Iran can help us in silencing or reforming special militias with links to Iran and are causing sectarian problems for us."