Iraqiya calls for action in new government

Dec. 7, 2010 at 3:04 PM
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BAGHDAD, Dec. 7 (UPI) -- Members of the secular Iraqiya slate in Baghdad called on leading political figures to decide on top Cabinet posts for a new government, a lawmaker said.

Iraqi lawmakers appointed Jalal Talabani, a Kurd, for a second term as Iraq's president and Nouri al-Maliki for another stint as prime minister. Osama al-Nujaifi from the Sunni-backed Iraqiya slate takes over as the Iraqi parliamentary speaker.

Iraqiya won March parliamentary elections but failed to get enough support to take the position of prime minister.

Iraqiya lawmaker Jamal al-Battikh told the Voice of Iraq news agency that former interim Prime Minister Iyad Allawi, the party's leader, was calling on rival parties to fill the remaining posts in the government.

"The conferees (at an Iraqiya meeting) had addressed a letter to the leading four political blocs, calling them to sit together to settle the issue of the Cabinet posts and the issue of the Parliament's points," he was quoted as saying.

Lawmakers have yet to fill many of the deputy posts like vice president and various ministerial portfolios.

Several new positions may emerge in the new government, including a role for Allawi at a national council tasked in part with checking the power of the prime minister.

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