Western opinion: a “fatal” political blow to Al-Sadr in Iraq

Western opinion: a “fatal” political blow to Al-Sadr in Iraq

2022-10-14 00:06

Western opinion - a fatal political blow to Al-Sadr in IraqShafaq News/ The American newspaper “Washington Post” sheds light on the Iraqi issue, in light of the election of the Iraqi parliament as a new president who immediately ordered the formation of a government, after a full year of political paralysis in the country after the parliamentary elections last October.

This came after Abdul Latif Rashid, a veteran Kurdish politician and former water minister, won the second round of voting for outgoing President Barham Salih. He quickly appointed Muhammad al-Sudani as prime minister, giving him 30 days to form a government.

Al-Sudani, 52, is part of the largest Shiite bloc in parliament and is a close ally of former Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki.

The newspaper said that Iraq has been witnessing a political crisis since last year, amid hostility between the Sadrist movement, led by prominent cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, and the “Coordination Framework”, an alliance that includes al-Maliki’s party and other Shiite factions more closely linked to Iran.

The Iraqi presidency, traditionally held by a Kurd, is a largely ceremonial position, but the vote for Rashid, 78, was a major step toward forming a new government, which politicians have failed to do since the election.

The dispute, which prevented the election of a president or the formation of a government, escalated in July as supporters of the two sides took to the streets and inaugurated competing sit-ins in central Baghdad, sparking memories of the civil war.

In this regard, the newspaper quoted Muhammad Jassim, an Iraqi political analyst residing in Baghdad, as saying: “I think what happened today is a fatal blow to Muqtada al-Sadr politically. With the victory of the members of the coordination framework over Muqtada al-Sadr, the way is completely paved for them to pass their candidate (the prime minister). ) and government formation.

Jassim considered that the victory of the “coordinating framework” is also a victory for Iran and a setback for US interests in the region. He added: “They will do everything in their power to eliminate any American presence in the country and put obstacles in the way of any economic cooperation with the United States…all for the benefit of Iran.”

For its part, the British newspaper “Financial Times” quoted analysts warning that the victory of the Iranian-backed coalition would be a setback for Washington, which has been tacitly supporting a government led by al-Sadr.

And the newspaper said, in a report, that Al-Sudani’s supporters claim that his proven record in local and federal government means that he can form an efficient government capable of tackling some of the problems of oil-rich Iraq, foremost among which is rampant corruption and dilapidated public infrastructure. On the other hand, she added, others warn that Al-Sudani’s candidacy is a “name only” breakthrough.

The newspaper quoted Renad Mansour, director of the Iraq Initiative at Chatham House, as saying that assigning Al-Sudani to form the government cannot address the deep political tensions in the country. He added: “It does not address the deep sense of alienation of the Iraqi people from the political elite,” criticizing the political system in Iraq.

Mansour continued, “Today it is heralded as a breakthrough in the deadlock. But we still see the same figures who have dominated the political scene since 2003, who have stifled reform and encouraged political corruption that harms Iraqis every day.”