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Son Succeeds Father as Head of Iraq's Largest Shi'ite Party


The son of deceased Iraqi politician Abdul Aziz al-Hakim has succeeded his father as head of Iraq's largest Shi'ite party.

Party officials say Ammar al-Hakim was confirmed Tuesday as leader of the Supreme Islamic Iraqi Council during a meeting in Baghdad.

Following his appointment, Ammar al-Hakim said party officials will work hard to establish a special position in the political process in Iraq, and to reach out to other political forces.

Ammar al-Hakim, who was nominated Monday to take over the party leadership, has been groomed for the position for some time. The elder al-Hakim died last week in Tehran, where he had been receiving treatment for lung cancer.

The Supreme Islamic Iraqi Council faces strong competition from other Shi'ite parties in parliamentary elections scheduled for January.

The Council scrapped an alliance with Iraq's Shi'ite Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki and his Dawa Party earlier this month, and formed a new Shi'ite coalition to contest the vote.


Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.

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