Iraq government sworn in
Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari pledged to unite Iraq's rival ethnic and religious factions and fight terrorism as the nation's government was sworn in Tuesday.
"You all know the heavy legacy inherited by this government. We are afflicted by corruption, lack of services, unemployment and mass graves," al-Jaafari told legislators after taking the oath of office before the National Assembly. "I would like to tell the widows and orphans ... your sacrifices have not gone in vain."
Five ministries, including the key defense and oil portfolios, remained in temporary hands and two deputy prime minister's posts were unfilled as al-Jaafari struggled to bring the disaffected Sunni minority into key posts.
Al-Jaafari will act as defense minister until consensus can be reached on a new one.
Al-Jaafari had promised to form a government that would win over the Sunnis, but members of his Shiite-dominated alliance rejected candidates with ties to Saddam Hussein's regime.
President Jalal Talabani wished the new Cabinet well in its historic task: "To achieve a unified democratic Iraq."