By Ibrahim Saleh
BAGHDAD (AA) – The Iraqi Federal Court on Sunday approved the results of the May 12 parliamentary election, according to a court spokesman.
“The court approved the final results of the parliamentary election during a session attended by all court members,” Iyad al-Samok said in a statement.
For the last two months, results of Iraq’s hard-fought May 12 parliamentary polls have remained the subject of bitter dispute amid widespread allegations of fraud.
Earlier this month, Iraq's electoral commission announced that a manual recount of the vote results were more or less the same as the initial electronic vote count.
According to the commission, only one seat from Iraq’s Baghdad Coalition had moved to the Al-Fatih Bloc, which is part of a Hashd al-Shaabi-led coalition (giving the latter 48 — instead of 47 — assembly seats).
Shia cleric Muqtada al-Sadr's Sairoon Coalition won 54 parliamentary seats, followed by a Hashd al-Shaabi-led coalition (48 seats) and Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi's Victory Bloc (42 seats), according to the results.
By Sunday's approval, incoming MPs will hold a first session to elect a new assembly speaker.
Within 30 days of that first session, the assembly will elect — by a two-thirds majority — the country’s next president.
The president will then task the largest bloc in parliament with drawing up a government, which must be referred back to parliament for approval.