Former minister announces formation of coalition between Shia, Sunni, Kurds in Iraq

SULAIMANI (ESTA) — A former Iraqi minister on Sunday announced the formation of a possible coalition between Shia, Sunni and Kurdish parties for the formation of a new government.

“Ruling coalition, al-Sadr, al-Barzani, al-Halbousi and al-Amiri,” former minister of construction and housing Bengen Rekani said in a tweet.

Rekani referred to Shia cleric Moqtada al-Sadr, leader of the Sadrist Movement, Masoud Barzani, leader of the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP), Mohammed al-Halbousi, head of Taqaddum Party, and Hadi al-Amiri, head of al-Fateh Alliance.


The minister’s tweet came after Sadr reiterated his attempt to form a “national majority government” which is “neither eastern nor western”.

On Saturday, Sadr and Amiri held a meeting at the cleric’s house in Najaf. There was no statement from either side to release information about the meeting.

On December 9, Sadrist movement, together with a Sunni parliament alliance and Kurds, re-elected Halbousi as parliament speaker opposed by the Iran-aligned camp with a solid majority.

Parliament must in the coming weeks choose the country’s president, who will call on the largest parliamentary alliance to form a government, a process that will be dominated by the Sadrist Movement whoever it chooses to work with.

Shia groups have dominated Iraqi politics since the U.S.-led overthrow of Sunni dictator Saddam Hussein in 2003. They span an array of parties, most with armed wings, but fall broadly now into two camps: those that are pro-Iran and those that oppose Tehran’s influence in Iraq.

The Shia elite have shared control over many ministries, with Iran-aligned groups holding the upper hand until the recent rise of Sadr, the biggest winner in the Oct. 10 election which dealt a crushing blow to the Iran camp.

For the first time post-Saddam, the Iran-aligned groups could see themselves in opposition in parliament.

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