Iraqi VP seeks more Arab support ahead of summit

Iraq's vice president asked for more support from fellow Arabs Sunday, saying it could help keep his country from being abandoned to terrorists and foreign powers. Vice President Tariq al-Hashimi's remarks came in a statement issued after his meeting with Jordan's King Abdullah II - and before regional leaders convene for an Arab Summit on Wednesday in Riyadh, the Saudi Arabian capital. Arabs need to shoulder "a strong role in supporting Iraq" to keep it from becoming "a pariah state for terrorism and foreign ambitions," al-Hashimi said. Other Iraqi leaders have made similar calls for increased Arab support. At a donor's conference in Istanbul last week, Planning Minister Ali Baban said Iraqis were disappointed by the amount of reconstruction aid given by Arab countries.