Iraq: resignation of deputies from the Sadrist bloc, the largest political force in Parliament

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In Iraq, the elected Sadrists, who represent the largest parliamentary force, resigned on Sunday. Since the October 2021 legislative elections, the country has been at an impasse. For lack of an absolute majority, Iraq still does not have a president and a government.

The 73 deputies of the current of the Shiite leader Moqtada Sadr, the most important formation in the Assembly of Iraq, presented their resignation on Sunday June 12. This gesture is intended to put pressure so that the formation of the government has stalled since the legislative elections of 2021.

“We have reluctantly accepted the demands of our brothers and sisters, representatives of the Sadrist bloc, to resign,” Parliament Speaker Mohammed al-Halboussi announced on Twitter after receiving the resignation letters from the 73 elected officials of Moqtada al. -Sadr who had himself demanded this collective gesture on Thursday from his deputies.

A “sacrifice for the country and the people”

In a handwritten statement, Moqtada al-Sadr, who appears to be an opponent of any foreign interference in Iraq, whether from the United States or Iran, called the decision a “sacrifice for the country and the people “.

The Sadrist bloc won, with 73 elected out of 329, the largest number of seats in the Council of Representatives during the last legislative elections, and strengthened its presence in Parliament.

But disagreements between parties have so far blocked the election of a president and the formation of a government.

The services of the Parliament were not available in the evening to comment on the constitutional implications of this decision.

But according to Iraqi political scientist Hamzeh Haddad “parliament still needs to ratify” these resignations “by an absolute majority” for them to become effective. However, the parliamentary holidays began Thursday and the elected officials must not find the hemicycle until August.

Political deadlock

This upheaval, however, underscores the total political impasse in which Iraq finds itself, where, since 2003 and the fall of President Saddam Hussein, negotiations between parties with a view to forming a government and appointing a Prime Minister play out overtime.

Since the early legislative elections of October 2021, from which the Sadrist movement emerged as the big winner, the two poles of political Shiism – that of Moqtada Sadr and the pro-Iran members of the Coordination Framework – have continued to demand a majority in Parliament and the right to appoint the prime minister.

Moqtada Sadr, allied with Sunni and Kurdish forces, intends to break the tradition which prevailed and which wanted all Shiite forces to be involved in a “consensus government”. The Shiite cleric wants a “majority government” that would push his opponents from the Coordination Framework into opposition.

He has not succeeded in doing so until today and, as a sign of protest, himself recently affirmed that his deputies sat “in the opposition”, leaving to the Coordination Framework the prerogative of the formation of a government. The Coordination Framework notably includes the Conquest Alliance, a political showcase for the former pro-Iran paramilitaries of Hachd al-Chaabi. It brings together 83 elected officials.

For lack of a clear majority and consensus, Parliament has failed three times since the beginning of the year to organize the election of the President of the Republic, the first stage before the designation of the Prime Minister and the formation of the government.

With Reuters and AFP

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