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Sadr calls for parliament to be dissolved within a week

Supporters of Shia cleric Moqtada al-Sadr storm the Iraqi parliament building in Baghdad's fortified Green Zone in Baghdad, Iraq on July 30, 2022 [Murtadha Al-Sudani/Anadolu Agency]
Supporters of Shia cleric Moqtada Al-Sadr storm the Iraqi parliament building in Baghdad's fortified Green Zone in Baghdad, Iraq on July 30, 2022 [Murtadha Al-Sudani/Anadolu Agency]

Powerful Iraqi cleric Moqtada Al-Sadr called on the country's judiciary to dissolve the parliament by end of next week, he said in a statement today, Reuters reported.

Protesters rallied by Al-Sadr and his Sadrist Movement tore down concrete barriers and entered the Green Zone, which houses government departments and foreign missions, before breaking into parliament last month.

The Sadrist Movement came first in an October election as the largest party in parliament, making up around a quarter of its 329 members.

Iran-aligned parties suffered heavy losses at the polls, with the exception of former Prime Minister Nouri Al-Maliki, an arch rival of Al-Sadr.

READ: UN chief calls for de-escalation in Iraq amid protests

Al-Sadr failed to form a government free of those parties, however, beset by just enough opposition in parliament and federal court rulings that stopped him getting his choice of president and prime minister.

He withdrew his lawmakers from parliament in protests and has since used his masses of mostly impoverished Shia followers to agitate through street protests.

Al-Sadr continues to ride the wave of popular opposition to his Iran-backed rivals, saying they are corrupt and serve the interests of Tehran, not Baghdad.

 

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