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Truce Talks Collapse in Najaf; New Assault Eyed

Attempts by the Iraqi government to strike a lasting cease-fire deal with fighters loyal to radical Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr appear to have failed. U.S. forces were prepared to resume an offensive in Najaf, but have been asked to stand down. Iraq's interim prime minister says he will send in Iraqi forces instead. Hear NPR's Jennifer Ludden and NPR's Ivan Watson.

Copyright 2004 NPR

Ivan Watson
Ivan Watson is currently based in Istanbul, Turkey. Following the 9-11 terrorist attacks, he has served as one of NPR's foreign "firemen," shuttling to and from hotspots around the Middle East and Central Asia.
Jennifer Ludden helps edit energy and environment stories for NPR's National Desk, working with NPR staffers and a team of public radio reporters across the country. They track the shift to clean energy, state and federal policy moves, and how people and communities are coping with the mounting impacts of climate change.