Iraqi parliament to hold confidence vote on new govt. next week: MP

An Iraqi lawmaker says the Arab country’s parliament will hold a vote of confidence on prime minister-designate Mustafa al-Kadhimi’s government next week.

“Kadhimi will submit an official request to hold a confidence vote session within the next two days,” Fadel Al-Fatlawi, a member of the Fatah (Conquest) Alliance, told Arabic-language al-Maalomah news agency in an exclusive interview on Wednesday.

He added that the intelligence chief “has completed a large part of his line-up for the next government, and he is still in political consultations with various (parliamentary) blocs to ensure its passage through the legislature.”

Fatlawi noted that the Speaker of the Council of Representatives, Mohamed al-Halbousi, has set next Tuesday (April 28) as the date for the session to vote on Kadhimi’s cabinet.

On April 9, Iraqi President Barham Saleh officially tasked Kadhimi with forming a government after the 53-year-old director of the country’s National Intelligence Service received the endorsement of the majority of the top political figures.

“I will work tirelessly to present Iraqis with a program and cabinet that will work to serve them, protect their rights and take Iraq towards a prosperous future,” Kadhimi wrote on his official Twitter page.

He would replace caretaker Prime Minister Adel Abdul-Mahdi, who stepped down last November following demonstrations against corruption, staggering youth unemployment and poor public services, which erupted in the capital Baghdad and then quickly spread to other cities.

Kadhimi has underlined that Iraq’s sovereignty will be a “red line” and that he would not compromise on it at all.

‘No disputes with PM-designate over withdrawal of US-led forces’

Separately, Saad al-Saadi, a senior member of the Fatah parliamentary coalition, dismissed reports that there are disagreements between a number of Iraqi political parties with prime minister-designate Mustafa al-Kadhimi about the pullout of US-led military forces from the country.

“The reports that there are disputes between Shia political blocs and Kadhimi regarding the evacuation of foreign troops from Iraq are inaccurate, and that there are no such disagreements. The issue is among the top priorities of the next government,” Saadi told Arabic-language Baghdad Today news website on Wednesday.

He added, “It was agreed that the (parliamentary) resolution about the removal of foreign forces from the Iraqi soil will be included in the next government’s plan. We are currently planning to present this motion to other political factions. Therefore, there are no disputes and the evacuation of US forces is among the principled issues agreed with Kadhimi.”

Iraqi lawmakers unanimously approved a bill on January 5, demanding the withdrawal of all foreign military forces led by the United States from the country following the assassination of Lieutenant General Qassem Soleimani, the commander of the Quds Force of Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps, along with Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, the deputy head of Iraq’s Hashd al-Sha’abi, and their companions in a US airstrike authorized by President Donald Trump near Baghdad International Airport two days earlier.

Later on January 9, Adel Abdul-Mahdi, the caretaker Iraqi prime minister, called on the United States to dispatch a delegation to Baghdad tasked with formulating a mechanism for the move.

The 78-year-old politician said Iraq rejects any violation of its sovereignty, particularly the US military’s violation of Iraqi airspace in the assassination airstrike.


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