Bahrain opposition drops pre-conditions for talks

MANAMA, March 3 (Reuters) - Bahraini opposition groups saidon Thursday they were now ready to enter into talks with thegovernment without pre-conditions, but have sent a letter to thecrown prince saying they want a new government and constitution.

The opposition groups, formed mainly of disgruntled majorityShi'ite Muslims, have led large protests in the island kingdomsince last month, but had previously demanded a commitment bythe ruling Sunni al-Khalifa family to democratic reforms beforeentering talks.

The US-allied Sunni government has made some concessionsafter ordering troops off the streets under internationalpressure, but a formal political dialogue has not yet started.

Six political groups led by the main Shi'ite oppositiongroup Wefaq want the resignation of the cabinet, a newconstitution under which the government is elected and aninvestigation into the actions of the security forces.

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