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Iraq PM vows to lead diverse coalition in May election

Iraq PM vows to lead diverse coalition in May election

Abadi, who led the country in the four-year war against Daesh, stated his intention of creating a cross-sectarian block called "the victory alliance" to contest the parliamentary elections, with candidates from other communities. The elections are expected to take place in May.

In a statement late Saturday, al-Abadi said his Victory Alliance will "boost the country's integrity and national sovereignty, correct mistakes and achieve justice and equality for all Iraqis".

Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi and his predecessor, Nouri al-Maliki, will run in the upcoming elections on two separate roasters, despite both taking part in the Islamic Dawa Party. Al-Maliki, who now serves as one of three vice presidents, was widely accused of pursuing sectarian policies that alienated the country's Sunni minority, leading many Sunnis to initially welcome IS as liberators.

Mr Al Abadi reached an agreement with the Al Fatih coalition, a group of powerful Shiite militias led by Hadi Al Ameri, to jointly participate in the elections as The Victory Alliance.

Maliki is the head of Dawa Party, the backbone of the ruling Shiite National alliance that includes nearly all prominent Iraqi Shiite parties.

Trump says US-Norway ties 'robust'
One of the sources who was briefed on the conversation said that Trump said, "Why do we want all these people from Africa here?" Solberg, by contrast, cited her support of the agreement, which she said would help American businesses.

Abadi is a Dawa member but he didn't secure Maliki's endorsement for his candidacy. The Dawa party has said its supporters can choose between the two.

The prime minister's office is reserved for Iraq's majority Shi'ite Arab community under a power-sharing system set up after the 2003 US-led invasion that toppled Saddam Hussein, a Sunni Arab. The speaker of parliament is drawn from Sunni Arab MPs.

Iraq's parliamentary election is scheduled to be held in May.

The U.N. mission to Iraq said the election commission faces "significant challenges" but would be able to "deliver a timely, fair and transparent national election".


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