Iraq election: Sadr Allawi comes second

Image copyright Reuters Image caption Cleric and right-wing politician Moqtada al-Sadr, centre, headed the campaign for Iraqi election’s second place The religious leader of Iraq’s defeated Yazidi community has come second in Sunday’s parliamentary…

Iraq election: Sadr Allawi comes second

Image copyright Reuters Image caption Cleric and right-wing politician Moqtada al-Sadr, centre, headed the campaign for Iraqi election’s second place

The religious leader of Iraq’s defeated Yazidi community has come second in Sunday’s parliamentary vote, official figures have shown.

Sadr Allawi, a former prime minister and Shia cleric, received 9.87% of the votes.

His closest rival is former prime minister Nouri al-Maliki, who received 10.24% of the votes, officials said.

The election was called after incumbent prime minister Haider al-Abadi gained a mandate for his reform programme.

The Fattah al-Hizb al-Shaabi, who is associated with Sadr, has won in the contest for parliamentary seats. The militia comprises mostly Shia fighters from the Hashed al-Shaabi, a military force designated as the state’s “antiterrorism” body.

Battlefield allies

But the election was boycotted by the Yazidi community after their candidate was removed from the ballot.

The victory of senior Shia figures continues their battle to control every corner of Iraq’s political landscape.

The Fattah al-Hizb al-Shaabi, which is associated with Sadr, will join the parliament to form a ruling coalition.

As well as Ghazaliya, Sadr’s forces have also completed the election in the Kurdish-controlled area of Sulaimaniyah, where they captured the provincial council.

The federal election in May had also been called after Mr Abadi’s plan to remove militias from security forces sparked anger among militants.

Image copyright Reuters Image caption Sadr ran as an independent, failing to form a government

Only Sadr supporters managed to vote in an unofficial referendum on June 8, held before the official election.

“I won’t give a veto to Al-Sadr’s alliance, or to Maliki’s list,” said a man voting for the first time in his life in Sadr’s stronghold of Baghdad.

“In the long run, someone from my group will govern here.”

The other candidates with the most votes were incumbent lawmaker and main Shia Islamist candidate Haider al-Abadi, who got 10.11%, and Hadi al-Amiri, head of the Badr Organisation, who got 9.25%.

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