Iraq’s Sadr says some parties want to change election results, rejects interference

Iraqi Shia cleric Moqtada al-Sadr delivers a speech to his supporters following Friday prayers at the grand mosque of Kufa, on May 3, 2019. (AFP photo)

SULAIMANI (ESTA) — Iraq’s Shia cleric Moqtada al-Sadr on Sunday rejected interference in the work of the electoral commission, which is expected to announce the final results of the October 10 election this week. 

“We condemn the political and security measures which the electoral commission is subjected to from the first day of its work to today,” Sadr said in a statement.

Following the announcement of initial results of the election, Iran-backed Shia parties rejected the initial results that handed them a crushing defeat and have also staged sit-ins in Baghdad which turned violent this month.

Sadr’s party was the biggest winner in the election, increasing the number of seats he holds in parliament.

But Hashid leaders have rejected the results as a “scam” and their supporters have held protests chanting “No to fraud” and accusing the prime minister of “complicity”.

“We should not interfere in the work of the judiciary and the court and its approval of the results that some want to change so that they can keep pace (the largest bloc) to be able to disrupt (the majority government),” Sadr said.

On November 8, the electoral commission said a manual vote recount in some polling stations where complaints were filed by pro-Iran groups did not show any “fraud”.

The electoral commission said in a statement that a manual vote recount at 4,324 polling stations indicated no irregularities.

“We have verified all the votes in the contested stations and the [preliminary] results are the same as those already announced,” it said.

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