Sadr-Amiri Alliance Shuffles Papers in Iraq

Sadr-Amiri Alliance Shuffles Papers in Iraq

Wednesday, 13 June, 2018 - 06:15
Security forces carry ballot boxes as smoke rises from the storage site in Baghdad [Reuters]
Baghdad- Asharq Al Awsat
In a surprising move that could shuffle political papers, Iraq's two Shi’ite leaders Muqtada al-Sadr and Hadi al-Amiri announced on Tuesday a political alliance between their blocs, the Sairoon Alliance and the Fateh (Conquest) Coalition.

Sadr and Amiri had won first and second place respectively in Iraq’s May parliamentary election.

“Our meeting was a very positive one, we met to end the suffering of this nation and of the people. Our new alliance is a nationalist one,” Sadr said.

The latest development came amid an Iranian move led by the head of Iran's elite fighting Quds Force, Qassem Soleimani, on the line of “containing the crisis of the ballot boxes.”

Soleimani had kicked off moves to arrange the ranks of Tehran’s allies ahead of forming the biggest parliamentary bloc in Iraq which would be responsible for lining up the new government.

In parallel with the moves of Soleimani, who carries the mission of an official military advisor to Iraq, Washington was interested to follow up on the political situation in Baghdad, where US Ambassador Douglas Silliman was seen holding meetings with political blocs to assess the latest developments.

An Iraqi politician and academic told Asharq Al-Awsat on Tuesday the Iranian general’s meetings with Iraqi officials were still in the framework of the Shi’ite house.

“Soleimani is trying to rearrange and restore all disputes that emerged between the top Shi’ite leadership,” he said, adding that Iranian efforts to form the “biggest parliamentary bloc in Iraq” have witnessed several difficulties.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi said on Tuesday that he was against repeating the elections, leaving the issue in the hands of the Judiciary.

“The matter is exclusively in the hands of the judiciary, not politicians. The government and parliament don’t have the power to cancel the election,” he said.

Two days ago, a fire tore through one of the Iraqi electoral commission’s storehouses in Baghdad’ Rasafa area where ballots cast in the May 12 election were being held.

The PM called the fire a deliberate act.

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