Former Iraq PM forms coalition with Shia Islamist leader
Former Iraq Prime Minister Haider Al-Abadi and leading Shia cleric and political leader Ammar Al-Hakim have formed a new coalition to compete in the 10 October parliamentary elections.
The National Power of the State will work "to solidify [the state's] principles and structure and works to enhance the prestige and sovereignty of its legitimate institutions", Al-Abadi said in a statement.
Al-Abadi was Iraq's prime minister from 2014 to 2018 as a member of the Nasr coalition. His term was weakened by government corruption, a crumbling economy, the war against the Islamic State group, and sectarianism.
Hakim led the Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq from 2009 to 2017 and is head of the National Wisdom Movement, a political coalition formed for the 2018 general election.
Originally supposed to be held in June, the general election was postponed after a request from the national electoral commission for more time to implement legal and logistical measures.
Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi promised to hold an early election after massive anti-government protests in October 2019.
Activists demanded fairer elections and changes to Iraq's voting mechanism and election board after widespread accusation of fraud that tainted the last nationwide vote in 2018.
Al-Kadhimi was chosen by parliament in May 2020 to lead a government until the elections.
So far, 267 parties have registered for the vote including at least 33 coalitions.