Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi and Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr
Baghdad (Iraqinews.com) – Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi has agreed to fulfill a condition set by Shia cleric Muqtada al-Sadr to retain his post as prime minister in the new government.
According to Alkhaleej Online, Sadr his requested Abadi to withdraw from the Islamic Dawa Party to enter into an alliance and allow him to retain his prime minister’s post.
The long-awaited alliance deal between Abadi’s Victory Alliance, which came third in a May parliamentary election, and Sadr’s Sairoon list, which won the largest number of seats, is expected to help in forming the new government after weeks of political tensions as a result of vote-ragging.
Al-Sadr’s Sairoon coalition won 54 parliamentary seats in the May 12 parliamentary polls, followed by an al-Hashd al-Shaabi-linked coalition (47 seats) and Abadi’s Victory bloc (42 seats), according to the election commission.
The vote results, however, have aroused widespread fraud allegations.
Al-Sadr’s coalition did not win the majority needed to form a government alone but will play a primary role in selecting the next prime minister.
Al-Sadr said earlier he hoped to establish a “technocrat” cabinet far removed from narrow sectarian biases.
Known for his hostile approach to the U.S., al-Sadr is one of few Shia leaders who don’t have close ties with Iran.