Biden calls Iraqi leaders about national elections

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WASHINGTON (AP) — Joe Biden’s office says the vice president he has been in touch with the top three Iraqi political leaders about their upcoming national elections.

Biden’s office says he contacted Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki (NOO’-ree ahl-MAHL’-ih-kee), President Jalal Talabani (jahl-LAHL’ tahl-ah-BAH’-nee) and Parliament speaker Ayad al-Sammaraie.

Biden encouraged the leaders to ensure March 7 elections are transparent, fair and inclusive.