Politics & Economics

Negotiations on formation of largest parliamentary bloc in Iraq continue

Iraq

After the Iraqi Supreme Court approved the results of the 2018 Iraq elections, negotiations to form the largest bloc in parliament are still ongoing amongst the parties with significant seats. The new parliament must convene by September 3rd.

Political parties in Iraq are continuing to negotiate with each other to form the largest parliamentary bloc before parliament reconvenes on the 3rd of September.

The negotiations come after the Iraqi Supreme Court approved the final results issued by the Iraqi Independent High Electoral Commission (IHEC) on 19th of August.

The announcement of the parliament’s first session on 3rd of September was released by the office of Iraqi President Fuad Masum, who according to the Iraqi constitution must call upon the new parliament to convene within 15 days of the Iraqi Supreme Courts approval.

Since the approval of the results, many developments have occurred amongst the various political parties in Iraq, the main being the formation of two main camps, each racing towards forming the largest coalition.

The first camp was formed by the Muqtada al-Sadr-led Sa’iroun Alliance with Haider al-Abadi’s Nasr Coalition, Iyad Allawi’s Wataniya, and Ammar al Hakim’s Hikma Movement all in alliance.

The opposing camp formed by Hadi al-Ameri’s Fatah Alliance and Nouri al-Maliki’s State of the Law Coalition has been attempting to include the largest Sunni Coalition, the National Axis, and the two main Kurdish Parties, the KDP and PUK. While the Kurdish parties have stated that they are not leaning towards any side at this stage, observers say that they are closer to reaching an agreement with the Ameri-Maliki alliance than they are with the Sadr-Abadi camp.

Since the announcement of the results, observers have been surprised to see that members within the National Alliance, a coalition of mainly Shi’a parties, have been more willing to work with the Kurdish and Sunni parties than they are eager to cooperate amongst themselves.

This has been seen by many observers as a maturation of Iraqi politics, as political alliances are no longer being drawn along ethno-sectarian lines, instead moving towards cross-sectarian agreements.

As of today, no official announcement has been made regarding the largest coalition. However, the parties have six days from Wednesday 29th August to form the largest parliamentary bloc which will determine the make-up of the next Iraqi Government.