Al-Halboosi seals an agreement with al-Khanjar, members of al-Azm are unsatisfied 

Al-Halboosi seals an agreement with al-Khanjar, members of al-Azm are unsatisfied 

Shafaq News/ The Sunni front that includes al-Azm bloc, led by Khamis al-Khanjar, and al-Takaddom bloc, led by the Speaker of the outgoing Iraqi parliament Mohammad al-Halboosi, lobbied for second term to the latter amid discontent among members of al-Azm alliance, a source revealed on Sunday.

The source told Shafaq News Agency, "al-Halboosi and al-Khanjar meeting in the United Arab Emirates ended up with a deal to renew the mandate of al-Halboosi and they have informed all the political forces, including the Sadrist movement."

"In exchange, the Sunni forces shall support the candidature of al-Khanjar to the position of the vice president," the source said.

"If things proceed accordingly, a majority government will be formed and Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi will secure another term. The dissenting parties can pursue opposition, except for the State of Law Coalition that has enough seats to secure a sovereign post."

However, members of al-Khanjar's bloc might not approve this step.

A source who preferred to remain anonymous told Shafaq News Agency, "we might abandon al-Khanjaf if he proceeds with al-Halboosi's candidature."


The member of al-Azm bloc, Mesh'an al-Jubouri, on Sunday said that al-Khanjar has traveled to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) along with al-Halboosi.

In a tweet he commenced with "In the open", al-Jubouri said, "in a confirmation for what we have already said but some refuted: Sheikh Khamis al-Khanjar, leader of al-Azm alliance, has arrived in the Emirates after a six-year ostracism."

Al-Jubouri said that al-Khanjar, along with al-Halboosi, will be on a bipartite tour that includes three countries. 

"They will inform the leaders of those states about their agreement to work together to serve Iraq and the destroyed cities," he added. 

Another source told Shafaq News Agency that the Sunni leaders visit to UAE aims to inform the states that support the Sunni component in Iraq about the division of labor between the two leading Sunni blocs in the next government.

"Another motive of the visit is to persuade al-Khanjar to approve the renewal of al-Halboosi's mandate at the head of the legislature," the source said, "Takaddom is aware of how tough it is to convince Azm to renew al-Halboosi's mandate, especially after the allying with other blocs which enabled him to vie for the chair. For this reason, it had to switch tactics in order to keep the post."

"Al-Halboosi is seeking the mediation of his allies [in the Gulf] to secure a second mandate by offering al-Khanjar the position of the vice president of the republic," the source continued.

"It is expected that the talks about the nominees for the vice president will be commenced after the ratification of the election results by the Federal Court. The givens imply that those positions are split between Nouri Al-Maliki's State of Law and al-Khanjar's al-Azm," the source continued," however, this is also contingent upon the Federal Court's Verdict on the appeals filed against the election results."

"If the Court ratifies the election results and dismisses the complaints, the preliminary agreement will automatically be put in force. i. e. none of the state heads can remain in his position and the abolished positions, like the vice presidents, cannot be reinstated. If the opposite takes place, and the court decides to carry out a recount for the Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) in the governorates that registered high rates of breaches, the Vito on renewing the mandates of the three presidents will be lifted and any of whom can compete for a second mandate."

A source in al-Azm alliance said that the Sunni bloc would not take part in any meeting held outside Iraq to nominate a new Parliament Speaker of the country. 

The source said in a statement to Shafaq News Agency, "we in Azm, leading figures and winning candidates, assert that naming a Parliament Speaker is a national choice, similar to other presidencies," in reference to the Presidency of the Republic and Premiership. 

"Any external interference in favor of a name or another is not accepted, neither by us nor by all the other forces in the national space," the source added, "on the contrary, such interference stifles the chances of the person of interest and places him in doubt and suspicion." 

Al-Khanjar's al-Azm, with a tally of 34 seats, joined hands with al-Halboosi's al-Takaddom bloc (the second biggest bloc in the parliament with 37 seats) and formed an alliance that will participate in the upcoming government as a single unified Sunni front.

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