Iraqi parliament elects new speaker

Ayad al-Samarraie's election enables MPs to start tackling stalled reforms.

    Ayad al-Samarraie received 153 votes out of the
    232 parliamentarians present [AFP]

    Al-Samarraie will follow Mahmoud al-Mashhadani, the former speaker, who resigned last December amid many complaints about his unpredictable behaviour and frequent insults of fellow parliamentarians.

    Iraq, which gets 95 per cent of its government revenue from oil exports, had slashed its spending plans and recently delayed passage of the 2009 budget for many weeks.

    Although Iraq's political system requires that the speaker be a Sunni Arab, the main Sunni bloc was unable to agree on a candidate until al-Samarraie emerged as a compromise candidate.

    Al-Samarraie, who lived in exile in Britain for decades during Saddam Hussein's rule, promised to work towards reform.

    "We will do our best to reform parliament and enable it to play a more active role," he said after being elected.

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Revival: The Muslim Response to the Crusades

    Revival: The Muslim Response to the Crusades

    This part of 'The Crusades: An Arab Perspective' explores the birth of the Muslim revival in the face of the Crusades.

    Going undercover as a sex worker

    Going undercover as a sex worker

    A photojournalist describes how she posed as a prostitute to follow the trade in human flesh.

    Africa is not poor, we are stealing its wealth

    Africa is not poor, we are stealing its wealth

    It's time to change the way we talk and think about Africa.