Iraq's parliament ends key session with no progress
Iraq’s parliament ended its second meeting Sunday after a 30-minute session without progress on forming a new government, Associated Press reports. The new government faces the challenge of reuniting a country torn apart by a massive Sunni insurgency. Members of the group the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) seized numerous Iraqi cities in late June, alarming the Iraqi government as well as the international community.
The Iraqi legislature must quickly elect a new speaker of parliament, a president, and a prime minister to form a stable government capable of combating the extremists. The international community had hoped that Iraqi lawmakers would at least vote on a speaker of parliament, but Sunday’s meeting was adjourned “due to absence of any agreement on the names of the nominees for the three posts,” according to acting parliament speaker Mahdi al-Hafidh.
Deciding which people should fill the empty spots isn’t the only disagreement slowing the process of Iraq’s parliament; lawmakers must also agree on whether to choose the top three positions individually, or to agree on all three as a package deal. An informal agreement established in 2003 says the speaker’s post goes to a Sunni, the presidency to a Kurd, and the prime minister’s seat to a Shiite.
The next session has been scheduled for Tuesday, AP reports.