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Iraq’s al-Maliki gives up post to rival

By
From page A10 | August 15, 2014 |

BAGHDAD — Nouri al-Maliki, Iraq’s prime minister for the past eight years, relinquished the post to his nominated replacement late Thursday, ending a political deadlock that has plunged the country into uncertainty as it fights a Sunni militant insurgency.

Standing alongside fellow Dawa Party member, Haider-al-Abadi, al-Maliki said he was stepping aside in favor of his “brother,” in order to “facilitate the political process and government formation.”

Al-Maliki said the decision to back al-Abadi reflected his desire to “safeguard the high interests of the country,” adding that he would not be the cause of any bloodshed. “My post is your confidence in me,” he declared in a televised address.

Al-Maliki has been struggling for weeks to stay on for a third four-year term as prime minister amid an attempt by opponents to push him out, accusing him of monopolizing power and pursuing a fiercely pro-Shiite agenda that has alienated the Sunni minority.

The pressure intensified this week when his Shiite political alliance backed al-Abadi to replace him, and President Fouad Massoum nominated al-Abadi to form the next government. Al-Maliki for days has refused to step aside, threatening legal action against the president for what he said was a violation of the constitution.

But in a meeting of his party earlier Thursday, al-Maliki agreed to endorse al-Abadi as the next prime minister, two senior lawmakers from his State of Law parliamentary bloc — Hussein al-Maliki and Khalaf Abdul-Samad — told the Associated Press.

The lawmakers said al-Maliki also agreed to drop a suit before the constitutional court challenging al-Abadi’s nomination.

 

The Associated Press

The Associated Press

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Discussion | 3 comments

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  • rlw895August 15, 2014 - 11:16 pm

    The US leverages it's military prowess into an orderly transition of power in Iraq. No shock and awe required. The message to the Bahgdad government is clear: Either create an all-inclusive government or fight ISIS on your own.

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  • Mr. SmithAugust 16, 2014 - 6:01 am

    If Obama had been on the ball months ago, there would be little to fear from ISIS at this point. As it stands now, ISIS may be a real threat to US interests everywhere, including here at home. Rlw tries to make Obama look good in this debacle. Can't be done. Regardless of how the new government in Iraq performs, we can't just turn our backs on the threat. We're not in this to do the Iraquis a favor, we must be in it for the good of the US. The question remains--what will Obama do now? He got what he demanded from Iraq, now he must put up or shut up. Any bets?

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  • rlw895August 16, 2014 - 6:15 am

    Mr.S: You'll have to be more specific as to what Obama should have done months ago. As for now, we aren't and weren't turning our backs on the threat, but we would continue to fight it while leaving the Damascus government behind, which means through the Kurds and not Damascus, which means Damascus would be on its own. The Kurds would end up with their own homeland, and all the territories in Iraq that the Kurds liberate would become part this new Kurdistan. Iraq would become an Arab Shiite state.

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