New Iraqi parliament convenes for 1st time since polls

New Iraqi parliament convenes for 1st time since polls

Monday's session will see the election of a new assembly speaker and his two deputies

News Service AA

The newly-seated Iraqi Parliament convened on Monday for the first time since the May 12 parliamentary elections.

Iraqi President Fuad Masum is scheduled to address lawmakers during the session, which will also see speeches by Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi and former speaker of parliament Salim al-Jabouri.

The session will also include the swearing-in of deputies and election of a new assembly speaker and his two deputies.

At least 165 MPs are required to form a coalition in the 329-seat parliament to be able to form the country's next government.

Early Monday, Vice-President Nouri al-Maliki, leader of State of Law coalition, claimed the formation of a major coalition in parliament named (construction) with 145 MPs.

Late Sunday, 16 Iraqi political groups said they formed the largest parliamentary group with 177 lawmakers.

Among the group are Shia cleric Muqteda al-Sadr’s Sairoon, al-Abadi’s al-Nasr coalition, al-Hikma, al-Wataniya, al-Qarar, as well as Iraqi Turkmen Front (ITF) and Kirkuk Arab MPs, according to a statement issued by the pertinent parties after a meeting in Baghdad.

The new bloc includes religious and ethnic groups, such as Shia and Sunni Arabs and Turkmen, as well as Ezidi and Christian minorities.

On Aug. 27, the Iraqi president issued a decree to convene the first session of the newly-elected parliament.

The formation of a new government in Iraq has been delayed since May, when the results of the parliamentary elections were fiercely disputed, leading to a manual recount of votes.


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