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Iraq: Al-Sadr, Amiri alliances in dialogue over ministerial positions

Iraqi Shia leader and cleric Moqtada al-Sadr delivers a speech to his supporters following Friday prayers at the grand mosque of Kufa in the central Iraqi shrine city, some 160 kilometres south of the capital Baghdad, on September 21, 2018. (Photo by Haidar HAMDANI / AFP / Getty Images)
Iraqi Shia leader and cleric Moqtada al-Sadr delivers a speech to his supporters following Friday prayers at the grand mosque of Kufa in the central Iraqi shrine city, some 160 kilometres south of the capital Baghdad, on 21 September 2018 [Haidar Hamdani/AFP/Getty Images)

The Iraqi coalitions led by Shia leaders Muqtada Al-Sadr and Hadi Al-Amiri are holding meetings to fill the vacant post of interior minister in the new Iraqi cabinet.

A well-informed political official told Al-Araby Al-Jadeed that there is hope of a resolution in the dispute between Amiri’s Al-Fateh coalition and Sadr’s Saeron alliance over the interior ministry portfolio. Sadr rejects Amiri’s candidate, Faleh El-Fayad, but new candidates are now likely to be introduced to replace El-Fayad, according to Al-Araby Al-Jadeed.

In the wake of Saeron’s rejection of El-Fayad, Al-Fateh showed flexibility in introducing new candidates; in return, Al-Fateh expects Saeron to accept their candidate for the ministry of culture portfolio, the source added.

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Meanwhile, the Iraqi parliament had to postpone a schedule meeting in the hope of reaching an agreement on filling a number of the eight ministerial portfolios that remain vacant.

The meeting was officially postponed from Monday to Wednesday due to the Muslim Prophet’s birthday being on Tuesday, yet sources told Al-Araby Al-Jadeed the underlying reason was to allow a compromise to be reached regarding the interior ministry portfolio.

A leader of the Civil Current, Khalid Al-Ali, told Al-Araby Al-Jadeed that Iraqi Prime Minister Adil Abdul-Mahdi is mediating between Iraqi political factions to reach an agreement. He said that resolving the disagreement over the interior ministry portfolio will result in settling a number of other portfolios, since a number of candidates will be introduced by Abdul-Mahdi during Wednesday’s parliamentary meeting.

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