Masum has no plans to postpone parliament convening for 15 days, says adviser

Iraqi President Fuad Masum

Baghdad ( – An Iraqi presidential adviser has denied that President Fuad Masum plans to postpone for 15 days the new parliament’s convening so as to allow Iraqi parties continue their talks over the new president and government.

In statements to Iraqi website Baghdad Today on Sunday, Sherwan al-Waeli said that “President Fuad Masum has received several calls to postpone for more 15 days the parliament’s first session, which was scheduled to be held tomorrow, Monday.”

According to al-Waeli, “the calls were made to give Iraqi parties the chance to continue their talks” over the new president and cabinet.

“The president is committed to the constitution and will not take any decision regarding the postponement of the parliament’s first session,” al-Waeli stressed, adding that all political parties should ensure that all their disputes were settled before the parliament convocation.

Last week, Masum issued a decree, ordering the newly-elected parliament to convene Monday, a move which precedes the election of the new president and formation of the long-awaited government.

According to the decree, “the first session of the parliament will be held on Monday, September 3, and will be chaired by the oldest lawmaker.”

Under the Iraqi constitution, 15 days after final election results are endorsed by the Federal Supreme Court, the new parliament must hold its first session during which the speaker will be chosen.

A new president will be elected within three days of the legislature convening and the president will then ask the largest parliamentary bloc to form a cabinet.

Iraq’s president is elected by the parliament by a two-thirds majority and is limited to two four-year terms

The speaker of the Iraqi parliament should be a Sunni Arab, the prime minister a Shiite, and the president a Kurd.

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