The Prime Minister’s Office said after Thursday’s vote, a year after the country’s elections, that “the government of Mohamed Shia al-Sudani has won the confidence of the General Assembly.”
The pro-Iran Shiite Sudanese was appointed earlier in October to form a government after a long battle over government power. But the appointment was met with sharp opposition from his arch-rival Moqtada al-Sadr, also a Shiite, but his back was turned to Iran.
The political game includes the fact that Al-Sudani is considered close to former Prime Minister Nuri Al-Maliki, and some observers claim that Al-Sudani is Al-Maliki’s puppet.
The movement around the powerful and influential Shiite leader Muqtada al-Sadr chose to organize violent protests during the early summer. Supporters of the Green Zone entered and occupied the House of Representatives in Baghdad to put pressure on the opposition.
In the end, al-Sadr and his movement chose to withdraw from parliament, and now stand outside the new Iraqi government.
Muhammad al-Sudani, in turn, succeeded in gaining support for his government through contacts with Kurdish and Sunni groups.
The Iraqi parliament had to elect a president before the government was formed. Abdellatif Rashid was elected a new president less than two weeks ago, but the vote was marred by widespread missile attacks in the capital.
Many were concerned about the new unrest when Parliament votes on a new government. But Muqtada al-Sadr and his supporters chose for this day to appear low.
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