EXCLUSIVE: Iraqi President Open to Insurgent Talks

One day after his visit to the White House, Iraqi President Jalal Talabani spoke exclusively to ABC News in a one-on-one interview with "This Week" host George Stephanopoulos.

Talabani highlighted what he called "steps forward" in Iraq, including new negotiations with insurgent groups to stop the increasing problem of attacks on coalition forces.

"We are coordinating and cooperating with American and British generals who are dealing with this problem. I think it's due to reach the final agreement," the Iraqi president said optimistically.

Watch the Full Interview With Iraqi President Talabani on 'This Week' Sunday, June 3

ABC News learned Thursday from sources that coalition officials have been conducting secret, face-to-face talks with insurgent groups. These radicals have demanded jobs and amnesty in exchange for peace.

It's a price Talabani said he's willing to pay to get to al Qaeda.

"I think then only al Qaeda will remain as the main criminal terrorist group, and it will be easy to eradicate it for these reasons: First, now people, especially Sunni Arabs, started to hate them and to fight them. And Iraqi armed forces are going to be more trained and more capable to fight them," Talabani told Stephanopoulos.

"So I think when this Iraqi so-called national resistance movement will be convinced to come to the political process," the Iraqi president continued. "The task of eradicating the al Qaeda terrorist group will be easier."

The Iraqi leader spoke candidly about other hot-button issues, including U.S. troop withdrawal and the recently set goal of meeting benchmarks.

Watch a video clip of George's interview with President Talabini by clicking here and be sure to tune in to "This Week" with George Stephanopoulos this Sunday to hear more of the exclusive interview.

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