President to pick New PM if Deadlock drags on

Iraqi president says will pick new PM if deadlock drags on

Iraqi President Barham Salih (pictured) said on Wednesday that he would choose an interim prime minister if political parties failed to name a replacement for Adel Abdul Mahdi by 1st February

Reuters reports that the deadline set by President Salih is the latest sign that the Shi’ite political parties who dominate Iraq’s parliament have failed so far to bridge their differences and select a new prime minister who is acceptable to the protesters.

Salih called on the rival political blocs to resume talks and agree a nominee.

If no name was presented to him by 1st February, Salih said in a statement he saw it as essential that he “carry out my constitutional prerogatives and designate whom I find more acceptable to the public and parliament”.

Two political blocs – Bina, backed by Iran, and Islah, led by populist cleric Moqtada al-Sadr – are closely involved in backroom discussions to agree on a candidate.

The protesters have been demanding not only a new electoral law and committee, but also the removal of the entire political class and appointment of a prime minister with no party affiliation.

(Source: Middle East Monitor)

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