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Iraq: Hakim Steps Aside From Presiding ‘Reform and Construction’ Alliance

Iraq: Hakim Steps Aside From Presiding ‘Reform and Construction’ Alliance

Tuesday, 25 June, 2019 - 12:00
Members of the new Iraqi parliament attend a session at the parliament headquarters in Baghdad (Reuters)

President of the Reform and Construction Alliance announced Monday stepping aside, few days after his movement decided to join the opposition front in Iraq's parliament.

National Wisdom (al-Hikma) Movement Leader Ammar al-Hakim called on the Alliance’s leadership to choose an alternative head in accordance with the mechanisms of its internal system.

“We appreciate the great trust granted to us by our brothers in the Reform and Construction Alliance’s leadership as they have given us the presidency over the past period, and we hope we have held our responsibility to the best,” Hakim tweeted.

The Alliance had chosen Hakim to preside it in November 2018, and it included various political powers represented in the parliament, having about 130 seats.

These political powers and parties include Sairoun coalition of cleric Moqtada al-Sadr, Nasr Coalition, led by the former Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, Hikma Movement, Iyad Allawi's al-Wataniya Coalition, Osama al-Nujaifi’s al-Qarar coalition, Turkmen Front’s list and representatives for the Christian, Sabean and Yazidi components.

Some observers said Hakim’s move is part of his political dynamic as he had previously quit from his country’s Islamic Supreme Council, which was founded by his father and uncle in 1982.

Leader in the Hikma Movement Fadi al-Shammari said his movement has decided to start establishing the opposition project and to sort areas clearly and explicitly among forces that are part of the government and those that have chosen not to participate in it.

In remarks to Asharq Al-Awsat, Shammari refused to link Hakim’s move to the issue of completing the cabinet formation and consolidating the fragmentation of political alliances that have been existing for years now.

“His decision to step aside is prior to the cabinet formation issue and has nothing to do with it,” he said, stressing that the movement wants to end the deadlock of the political process and the democratic path.

And on whether Hikma Movement, which consists of 17 deputies, will weaken the opposition front due to its minority, Shammari said the opposition’s power is not decided by its number of deputies.

“We have previously opposed Nouri al-Maliki’s government and succeeded in that, and we were able to oust Maliki with the support of other blocs.”

He said Hikma Movement has 20 MPs and is expecting 13 more to join from the rest of blocs.

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