News / Middle East

Outgoing Iraqi PM Asked to Form New Government

Iraqi President Jalal Talabani, center right, and Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, center left, are seen during a ceremony of asking al-Maliki to form the next government in Baghdad, 25 Nov 2010
Iraqi President Jalal Talabani, center right, and Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, center left, are seen during a ceremony of asking al-Maliki to form the next government in Baghdad, 25 Nov 2010

Iraqi President Jalal Talabani formally nominated outgoing Prime Minister Nouri al Maliki Thursday to form the next government. The nod was widely expected and Maliki will now be tasked with bringing together both foe and friend in his new administration. The move had been agreed upon in a deal between rival political parties two weeks ago.

Maliki's nomination comes just over eight and a half months after a parliamentary election in which he won two fewer seats than his rival, former prime minister Iyad Allawi. The conflict between the two men over who would form the next government fueled what turned into a lengthy power vacuum.

President Talabani, who was himself elected by parliament recently to a second term, urged Mr. Maliki to reach out to all segments of the political spectrum in forming his new government.

He said he is confident that [Maliki] will reach out to all sectors of the nation, stressing that he will select someone from [Mr. Allawi's rival] Iraqiya bloc to be his deputy, and that no political forces will be excluded from the government. The constitution, he added, will be respected and parliament will play its role as the head of the legislative branch.

Maliki will formally have 30 days to put together his new government, although some observers think an agreement has already been reached over a number of key ministerial posts.

Challenges ahead

In accepting the nod, Maliki pointed out that the task facing him would not be simple.

He said that he and everyone else understands that the task which has been given to him is not a simple one, under the current circumstances. He insisted that he cannot accomplish the job alone and that everyone must work together to overcome the current critical situation. He also appealed to the Iraqi people, across the political and religious spectrum, to surmount their differences and conflicts and to cooperate.

The prime minister also vowed to improve the lot of the Iraqi people through better government services.

He insisted that government ministers and other political forces must work alongside him responsibly in the next session [of parliament] to reinforce security, to help rebuild the country and to restore services. He said that the previous government has concentrated on projects in the areas of electricity, oil, health services and education and that the coming years will see these projects come to fruition and will help improve the well-being of the Iraqi people.

The Iraqi press and opposition satellite channels have complained in recent months that parliament has sat idle, refusing to meet, while the country "disintegrated." Several newspapers even urged members of parliament to "give back their salaries" because they had done no work.

Iraq analyst Peter Harling of the Crisis Group in Damascus points out that Maliki, who now has 30 days to put together his cabinet, could still face a number of problems.

"We could look at possible stumbling blocks in terms of to what extent Maliki is willing to actually implement some of the commitments he made to redistributing effective power to others within the government."

Harling says Maliki has long come under fire from members of the opposition over concentrating power in the hands of his allies. The rival Aqiya bloc recently agreed to a power-sharing deal, but it remains unclear how this will work concretely.

NEW: Follow our Middle East stories on Twitter
and discuss them on our Facebook page.

You May Like

Multimedia US Nurse ‘Cured of Ebola,’ NIH Says

Nina Pham, Texas nurse who treated first Ebola patient in US, received no experimental drugs; WHO expects vaccine surge in 2015 More

Video Islamic State Militants Encroach on Baghdad

Iraqi capital not under ‘imminent threat,’ US military says, amid worries about foothold More

Video Hong Kong Protesters Focus on Holding Volatile Mong Kok

Activists say holding Mong Kok is key to their movement's success, despite confrontations with angry residents and police More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rulesi
X
October 21, 2014 12:20 AM
European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video US ‘Death Cafes’ Put Focus on the Finale

In contemporary America, death usually is a topic to be avoided. But the growing “death café” movement encourages people to discuss their fears and desires about their final moments. VOA’s Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Ebola Orphanage Opens in Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone's first Ebola orphanage has opened in the Kailahun district. Hundreds of children orphaned since the beginning of the Ebola outbreak face stigma and rejection with nobody to care for them. Adam Bailes reports for VOA about a new interim care center that's aimed at helping the growing number of children affected by Ebola.
Video

Video Young Nairobi Tech Innovator on 'Track' in Security Business

A 24-year-old technology innovator in Nairobi has invented a tracking device that monitors and secures cars. He has also come up with what he claims is the most robust audio-visual surveillance system yet. As Lenny Ruvaga reports from the Kenyan capital, his innovations are offering alternative security solutions.
Video

Video Latinas Converting to Islam for Identity, Structure

Latinos are one of the fastest growing groups in the Muslim religion. According to the Pew Research Center, about 6 percent of American Muslims are Latino. And a little more than half of new converts are female. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti travelled to Miami, Florida -- where two out of every three residents is Hispanic -- to learn more.
Video

Video Exclusive: American Joins Kurds' Anti-IS Fight

The United States and other Western nations have expressed alarm about their citizens joining Islamic State forces in Syria and Iraq. In a rare counterpoint to the phenomenon, an American has taken up arms with the militants' Syrian Kurdish opponents. Elizabeth Arrott has more in this exclusive profile by VOA Kurdish reporter Zana Omer in Ras al Ayn, Syria.
Video

Video South Korea Confronts Violence Within Military Ranks

Every able-bodied South Korean male between 18 and 35 must serve for 21 to 36 months in the country’s armed forces, depending upon the specific branch. For many, service is a rite of passage to manhood. But there are growing concerns that bullying and violence come along with the tradition. Reporter Jason Strother has more from Seoul.
Video

Video North Carolina Emerges as Key Election Battleground

U.S. congressional midterm elections will be held on November 4th and most political analysts give Republicans an excellent chance to win a majority in the U.S. Senate, which Democrats now control. So what are the issues driving voters in this congressional election year? VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone traveled to North Carolina, one of the most politically competitive states in the country, to find out.
Video

Video Comanche People Maintain Pride in Their Heritage

The Comanche (Indian nation) once were called the “Lords of the Plains,” with an empire that included half the land area of current day Texas, large parts of Oklahoma, New Mexico, Kansas and Colorado.The fierceness and battle prowess of these warriors on horseback delayed the settlement of most of West Texas for four decades. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Lawton, Oklahoma, that while their warrior days are over, the 15,000 members of the Comanche Nation remain a proud people.
Video

Video Turkey Campus Attacks Raise Islamic Radicalization Fears

Concerns are growing in Turkey of Islamic radicalization at some universities, after clashes between supporters of the jihadist group Islamic State (IS) or ISIS, and those opposed to the extremists. Pro-jihadist literature is on sale openly on the streets of Istanbul. Critics accuse the government of turning a blind eye to radicalism at home, while Kurds accuse the president of supporting IS - a charge strongly denied. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.

All About America

AppleAndroid