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Iraq Parliament meets, Govt formation resumes

IRAQ: Iraq's lawmakers will yesterday got back to the task of forming a new Government after talks following a landmark power-sharing deal were interrupted by the Muslim holiday of Eid.

Newly re-elected President Jalal Talabani is expected to officially name incumbent Premier Nuri al-Maliki as Prime Minister-designate, giving him 30 days to form a cabinet and finally bring to an end months of impasse following inconclusive elections in March.

Sunday's scheduled session of parliament, due to open at 11:00 am (0800 GMT), was to focus on the formation of the Council of Representatives' committees and the chamber's regulations, a parliamentary official said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

It comes after a power-sharing pact was agreed earlier this month and lauded by international leaders including US President Barack Obama, though the agreement has looked fragile ever since.

The deal called for Maliki, a Shiite, and Talabani, a Kurd, to keep their jobs and for a Sunni Arab to selected speaker of parliament. It also established a new statutory body to oversee security as a sop to Iyad Allawi, who had held out for months to regain the post of premier after his Iraqiya bloc narrowly won the most seats in the March 7 poll.

Baghdad, Sunday, AFP

 

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