Iraqi cleric Moqtada al-Sadr meets PM Abadi, hinting at coalition

Sunday, 20 May 2018

A meeting between nationalist cleric Moqtada Sadr and Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi was held a day after the announcement of the Iraqi parliamentary election results to reaffirm close ties between both parties in forming a future government, a source close to Sadr revealed. A statement released by Abadi on Saturday said that the meeting with Sadr came for the sake of working together to speed up the process of forming a new government, and ensure that the government will be strong, ...

After election victory, Sadr tweets to Iraqis ‘we will not let you down’

Saturday, 19 May 2018

Shiite leader Moqtada al-Sadr said in a tweet on Saturday that he would not let Iraqis down after his parliamentary election victory. “Your vote is an honor for us and a responsibility we will shoulder,” Sadr said in a Twitter post. He added: “We will not let you down, and the blame is placed on those who failed Iraq.” The tweet comes following the confirmation of the official results of the Iraqi parliamentary election last night, with a sweeping win of the Sairoon ...

The benefits of Iraqi protest movements

Saturday, 19 May 2018

I once wrote about protest movements that had erupted in Iraq towards the end of July 2015, which had spread to several governorates including the capital Baghdad. Historically and politically, these were comparable to Al-Wathbah uprising in January in 1948 and to the November 1952 Intifada, which are considered the most important protest movements in Iraq’s modern history as they sought to restore freedoms and national sovereignty and independence.Impact of protest movementsI do not think ...

Adnan Hussein

US-Iraq military relations not impacted by election: US general

Friday, 18 May 2018

The US military’s relationship with Iraq’s security forces will not be impacted by the election win of Moqtada Sadr, whose followers fought US troops in past years, a top general said Friday. General Joe Votel, who heads the US military’s Central Command, which oversees forces in the Middle East, told AFP he had confidence in the positive dynamic built up while the Iraqis fought the ISIS group for three years. “They are very focused on continuing to provide protection for ...

UN calls on Iraq to probe election complaints

Thursday, 17 May 2018

The UN on Thursday called for Iraq’s electoral commission to “immediately and fully” investigate complaints by candidates and parties over the conduct of this month’s legislative elections. “The commission has to act expeditiously in order to seriously address all complaints,” the UN’s envoy to Iraq, Jan Kubis, said in a statement. Partial results for the May 12 poll show the Marching Towards Reform alliance of Shiite cleric Moqtada Sadr and communists ...

Iraq: Armed men trap election workers in Kirkuk, block count

Wednesday, 16 May 2018

Iraq’s election commission says armed men have trapped election workers inside their offices and blocked the vote count in the northern city of Kirkuk, an oil hub at the heart of a long-running dispute with the Kurds.Elections commissioner Riad al-Badran told a press conference Wednesday that the affiliation of the armed men was not known. He called on Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi to protect the election team.He says results from 186 ballot boxes remain uncounted from Kirkuk, which has ...

The post-election Iraqi government

Wednesday, 16 May 2018

The recent Iraqi parliamentary elections were not like their antecedents — including the first elections after Saddam’s ouster in 2005. This time, the large blocs formed on sectarian (Shiite-Sunni) and nationalist (Arab-Kurdish) lines dissolved. The newly elected House of Representatives will consist of a larger number of coalitions that will have lesser weight. It’s unlikely that the most important Shiite bloc (the National Iraqi Alliance) will emerge again given its recent ...

Adnan Hussein

As former US foe gains, Mattis ‘stands with’ Iraq election result

Wednesday, 16 May 2018

US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said Tuesday he stands by Iraqis’ electoral choices, despite the surprise success of populist Shiite cleric Moqtada Sadr -- who fought US troops during the Iraq War. Sadr’s gains have called into question the presence of US forces in Iraq, where more than 5,000 troops are indefinitely deployed to prevent a resurgence of ISIS. “The Iraqi people had an election. It’s a democratic process at a time when people, many people doubted that Iraq ...

Who is the Iraqi leader who was named on the US blacklist?

Wednesday, 16 May 2018

After the death of Iraqi National Congress leader Ahmed Chalabi, the person next to take the alliance’s reigns was foreign to the political and societal stage. However, his name is now known among the country’s youth after he established the Aras Habib Youth Development Foundation. Aras Habib, president of the Iraqi National Congress and chairman of al-Bilad Islamic Bank was blacklisted by the US Treasury on Tuesday. The treasury said Habib had a history of smuggling money to Iranian ...

Iraq invites bids to build oil refinery in Diwaniya

Tuesday, 15 May 2018

Investors interested in bidding to build a 70,000 barrel-per-day oil refinery in Diwaniya south of Baghdad have until July 31 to make offers, the Iraqi oil ministry said in a statement on Tuesday.The refinery is one of several crude oil processing projects offered by Iraq as part of a plan to become self-sufficient in oil products.Iraq is the second-largest crude oil producer in the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries after Saudi Arabia.

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