Bafel Jalal Talabani meets Maliki, Amiri in Baghdad

SULAIMANI (ESTA) — A delegation from the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) led by Bafel Jalal Talabani met with Shia leaders Nouri al-Maliki and Hadi al-Amiri in Baghdad on Friday.

Talabani discussed the latest political and security developments in the country with Maliki, head of the State of Law coalition, and Amiri, head of al-Fateh Alliance.

He stressed the PUK’s determination to strengthen and develop relations with the political partners in Iraq and the Kurdistan Region, his office said in a statement.

“When we talk about compromise and consensus for today’s phase, we mean to preserve coexistence and political tranquility and to form a government together, that is at the level of people’s will,” he said.

“So, we reject any attempt that disrupts social peace and causes further destruction for Iraqis,” he added.

Maliki, for his part, said the Coordination Framework “is determined” to reach a consensus with the national parties so as to form a government urgently.

The Coordination Framework includes State of Law Coalition, al-Fateh Alliance, Ata Movement, National Forces Alliance, Haquq Movement and Fadhila party.

Iraqi parties have begun negotiations to form the largest parliamentary bloc, after lawmakers re-elected Mohammed al-Halbousi as its speaker last month.

No single party holds an outright majority, so the next leader will be voted in by whichever coalition can negotiate allies to become the biggest bloc — which then elects Iraq’s president, who then appoints a prime minister.

In previous parliaments, parties from Iraq’s Shia majority have struck compromise deals to work together and form a government, with an unofficial system whereby the prime minister is Shia, the president is a Kurd and the speaker of parliament is Sunni.

But Sadr has repeatedly said the next prime minister will be chosen by his movement.

The Council of Representatives has set February 7 as a date to hold a session to elect a new president for the country, who will later appoint a prime minister.

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