Hardline Shiite constitutional negotiator named as new Iraqi PM

[JURIST] Iraq President Jalal Talabani [BBC profile] formally designated hardline Shiite politician Jawad al-Maliki [Wikipedia backgrounder] to form a new government Saturday, giving him 30 days to present his Cabinet to Parliament for approval. Shiites nominated al-Maliki on Friday after outgoing Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari [BBC profile] gave up his bid for another term. The move ends months of political deadlock between Shiites, Sunnis and Kurds. Al-Maliki has a reputation as an avid defender of the Shiite viewpoint and his appointment incites speculation over whether he will be able to negotiate a non-sectarian government. Al-Maliki returned from exile in Syria after Saddam Hussein’s regime fell, and has since been active in purging former Baath Party [Aljazeera backgrounder] officials from the new Iraqi military and government, acting as deputy leader of Iraq's controversial Debaathification Commission [official website].

Al-Maliki was the outspoken senior negotiator for Iraqi Shiites in lengthy deliberations last year over the new Iraqi constitution [JURIST news archive; JURIST document] approved in last year's October referendum [JURIST report], resisting US efforts to put more Sunnis on the drafting committee as well as Sunni efforts to restrict provisions giving Shiites and Kurds the power to form semiautonomous mini-states in the north and south of the country. AP has more.

 

About Paper Chase

Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

© Copyright JURIST Legal News and Research Services, Inc., 2013.