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Alaturka

Iraq: Parliament sacks governor over ferry accident

<p>By Naza Mohamed</p> <p>BAGHDAD (AA) – Iraq’s Parliament on Sunday approved a request by the prime minister to sack the governor of the northern Nineveh province, Nofal al-Akoub, and his two deputies over last week’s ferry incident on the Tigris River that killed 103 people. </p> <p>Parliament also called for the completion of investigations of the accident to determine was at fault, and compensation for the families of the victims.</p> <p>After visiting the scene of the accident, Prime Minister Adil Abdul-Mahdi announced three days of national mourning.</p> <p>Iraq’s Supreme Judicial Council said on Thursday that nine people had been detained over the deadly accident.</p> <p>Earlier this month, an Iraqi parliamentary committee had called for al-Akoub’s suspension over corruption claims. </p> <p>Civil defense teams in Nineveh are still trying to recover bodies from the accident, in which only 55 people survived out of nearly 200 passengers, according to security and medical sources.</p> <p>Local residents have blamed the accident on overcrowding, saying the ill-fated ferryboat had only a 50-passenger capacity.</p>

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Alaturka

UPDATE – Iraqi parliament confirms 3 cabinet nominees

UPDATES WITH IRAQI PM CONFIRMATION, DELETING RELATED PART

By Ibrahim Saleh

BAGHDAD (AA) – Iraq's parliament on Tuesday gave a vote of confidence to three cabinet nominees put forward by Prime Minister Adil Abdul-Mahdi.

A majority of Iraqi MPs approved Nouri al-Dileimi for the planning portfolio; Qusai Suhail for the higher education and scientific research portfolio; and Abdul-Amir al-Hamadani for the culture portfolio.

The MPs, however, failed to agree on who should head up the key ministries of interior, defense, justice, education, and immigration, amid ongoing differences between Iraq’s Al-Bina and Al-Islah parliamentary blocs.

Assembly Speaker Mohamed al-Halbusi called another parliamentary session for Thursday.

Thursday’s session will see MPs vote on the remaining nominees, Abdul-Mahdi confirmed Tuesday.

Tuesday’s vote brings the total number of ministers in Abdul-Mahdi's government to 17 after 14 others were confirmed by parliament in late October.

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Alaturka

Iraqi parliament confirms three cabinet nominees

By Ibrahim Saleh</p> <p>BAGHDAD (AA) – Iraqi parliament on Tuesday gave a vote of confidence to three cabinet nominees put forward by Prime Minister Adil Abdul-Mahdi.</p> <p>A majority of Iraqi MPs approved Nouri al-Dileimi for the planning portfolio; Qusai Suhail for the higher education and scientific research portfolio; and Abdul-Amir al-Hamadani for the culture portfolio. </p> <p>MPs, however, failed to agree on who should head up the ministries of interior, defense, justice, education and immigration amid ongoing differences between Iraq’s Al-Bina and Al-Islah parliamentary blocs.</p> <p>Assembly Speaker Mohamed al-Halbusi called another parliamentary session for Thursday, but it remains unclear whether Thursday’s session will see MPs vote on the remaining nominees.</p> <p>Tuesday’s vote brings the total number of ministers in Abdul-Mahdi's government to 17 after 14 others were confirmed by parliament in late October.

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Politika

Iraq parliament to elect president on Oct. 2: Speaker

By Ali Jawad

BAGHDAD (AA) – The Iraqi parliament will choose the country’s next president on Oct. 2, Assembly Speaker Mohammed al-Halbousi said Tuesday.

The two main political parties in northern Iraq's Kurdish region are both competing to obtain the post, with the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) nominating Barham Saleh and the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) nominating Fuad Hussein.

“The deadline for electing the next president of the republic has been set for Oct. 2, ” al-Halbousi told members of the assembly.

On Monday, Abbas Beyatli, deputy leader of Iraq’s Turkmen Nationalist Movement, also announced his intention to vie for the post.

And on Sunday, Sirve Abdulvahid, an independent politician of Kurdish origin, likewise announced her candidacy, becoming Iraq’s first female politician to do so.

Once elected by lawmakers, the new president will task the majority bloc in parliament with drawing up a new government.

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Politika

Iraqi parliament elects second deputy speaker

By Ibrahim Saleh

BAGHDAD (AA) – The Iraqi parliament on Sunday elected Bashir al-Haddad as second deputy speaker.

The candidate of the Democratic Party of Kurdistan Bashir al-Haddad won the post of second deputy speaker by obtaining more than 185 out of 282 votes, according to Anadolu Agency's reporter.

Iraq's parliament on Saturday elected Sunni politician Mohammed al-Halbusi as assembly speaker and the Shia MP Hassan Karim al-Kaabi as the first deputy speaker.

Earlier this month, the newly-elected parliament postponed the election of a new assembly speaker to mid-September after a number of lawmakers decided to boycott the vote.

Under Iraq’s constitution, the majority bloc in parliament has the right to draw up the country’s next government.

According to results of Iraq’s May 12 parliamentary poll, Muqtada al-Sadr's Sairoon Coalition won 54 seats, followed by a Hashd al-Shaabi-led coalition (47 seats) and Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi's Victory Bloc (42 seats).

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Alaturka Gazetesi

Iraqi parliament elects Sunni politician Mohamed al-Halbusi as assembly speaker

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Alaturka Gazetesi

Iraq's Parliament condemns US’ Jerusalem move

By Afra Aksoy

BAGHDAD (AA) – Iraq’s Parliament on Sunday passed a resolution condemning the U.S. move to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

Speaking to Anadolu Agency, Ali es-Safi from the National Iraqi Alliance said that lawmakers decided that the U.S. decision was a provocation to all religions and a threat to international peace.

The lawmakers also said Jerusalem is the capital of the Palestinian state, he added.

On Dec. 6, U.S. President Donald Trump announced his decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, drawing widespread international condemnation.

Later the UN General Assembly overwhelmingly adopted a resolution, co-sponsored by Turkey and Yemen, rejecting Trump’s decision.

Jerusalem remains at the heart of the Middle East conflict, with Palestinians hoping that East Jerusalem — occupied by Israel since 1967 — might eventually serve as the capital of an independent Palestinian state.

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Alaturka Gazetesi

Iraq’s Parliament condemns US’ Jerusalem move

By Afra Aksoy

BAGHDAD (AA) – Iraq’s Parliament on Sunday passed a resolution condemning the U.S. move to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

Speaking to Anadolu Agency, Ali es-Safi from the National Iraqi Alliance said that lawmakers decided that the U.S. decision was a provocation to all religions and a threat to international peace.

The lawmakers also said Jerusalem is the capital of the Palestinian state, he added.

On Dec. 6, U.S. President Donald Trump announced his decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, drawing widespread international condemnation.

Later the UN General Assembly overwhelmingly adopted a resolution, co-sponsored by Turkey and Yemen, rejecting Trump’s decision.

Jerusalem remains at the heart of the Middle East conflict, with Palestinians hoping that East Jerusalem — occupied by Israel since 1967 — might eventually serve as the capital of an independent Palestinian state.

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Alaturka Gazetesi

Iraqi MPs demand dissolution of Kirkuk province council

BAGHDAD (AA) – Seventy-four Iraqi MPs have signed a petition calling for the dissolution of Kirkuk’s provincial council, Iraqi Turkmen lawmaker Niyazi Mimaroglu told Anadolu Agency on Saturday.

“We launched this petition to protest the council’s failure to implement decisions taken by the central administration, represented by the Iraqi parliament,” Mimaroglu said.

“Once we have collected 200 [MPs’] signatures, the council can be dissolved by a parliamentary decision,” he added.

Mimaroglu went on to assert that Kirkuk’s ongoing political dispute would not be resolved by merely removing the provincial governor.

Holding a planned referendum on Kurdish regional independence in Kirkuk “will only allow Kurdish forces to take over disputed areas”, Mimaroglu said, going on to warn: “This hegemony will pose a threat to everyone in these territories”.

He added: “If Kirkuk’s provincial council is dissolved, a state of emergency will be declared and the province will end up being directly overseen by the military.”

Last Thursday, Iraqi lawmakers voted to remove Kirkuk Governor Najmiddin Karim from his post based on a request by Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi.

Northern Iraq’s Kurdish Regional Government (KRG), for its part, condemned the move, which it said violated Iraq’s national charter.

Late last month, Kirkuk’s provincial council — at a session boycotted by Turkmen and Arab members — voted to include the disputed province in a planned Sept. 25 referendum on Kurdish regional independence.

The move triggered an uproar, with Iraqi politicians and MPs calling for Karim’s immediate removal from office — calls that were implemented last week.

The controversial referendum, results of which will be non-binding, will see residents of the northern Kurdish region vote on whether or not to declare independence from Iraq.

Baghdad, however, rejects the planned poll, saying it will adversely affect the fight against the Daesh terrorist group, which still maintains a significant presence in northern Iraq.

The Iraqi government also contends that holding the poll would violate the terms of the country’s 2005 national charter.

Turkey, too, rejects the planned referendum, saying the region’s stability depends on the maintenance of Iraq’s unity and territorial integrity.

*Ali Murat Alhas contributed to this report from Ankara

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Politika

UPDATE – Iraqi parliament removes Kirkuk governor from office

*UPDATES WITH REACTION FROM KURDISH REGIONAL GOVERNMENT IN NORTHERN IRAQ

By Haydar Hadi

BAGHDAD (AA) – Iraqi lawmakers on Thursday voted to remove Kirkuk Governor Najmiddin Karim from his post following a request by Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi.

Kirkuk’s provincial council had announced on Aug. 29 its decision — at a session boycotted by Turkmen and Arab members — to include the disputed province in an upcoming referendum on Kurdish regional independence in northern Iraq.

The decision sparked uproar and calls by member of parliaments and politicians to remove Karim from office.

The Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) has strongly condemned the parliament’s decision saying it violated the constitution.

The people of KRG, especially Kirkuk, will not be bound by the parliament’s decision, a presidential statement said, adding the Kirkuk governor was elected to office and approved by the provincial council.

“The right [to remove the governor from office] belongs to the people of Kirkuk, not the Iraqi parliament,” the statement read.

Slated for Sept. 25, the non-binding referendum will see residents of northern Iraq’s Kurdish region vote on whether or not to declare formal independence from Baghdad.

Baghdad rejects the planned poll, saying it will adversely affect the fight against the Daesh terrorist group, which still maintains a significant presence in northern Iraq.

The Iraqi government also believes that holding the poll would violate the terms of the country’s constitution.

Turkey, too, rejects the planned referendum, saying the region’s stability depends on the unity of Iraq and the maintenance of its territorial integrity.

Washington, for its part, has voiced concern that the poll could serve as a “distraction” from other pressing regional issues, especially the fight against terrorism and the stabilization of post-Daesh Iraq.

Historically comprised of Arabs, Turkmen and Kurds, oil-rich Kirkuk remains disputed between Masoud Barzani’s Kurdish Regional Government and Iraq’s central government.