Iraq – Tensions rise as pro Iran parties turn out supporters to confront Sadarists
Location: The Green Zone – Parliament Building- Baghdad – Iraq
Source: A24 in Iraq
Restrictions: A24 Subscribers
Date: 01/08/ 2022
Supporters of the most prominent pro-Iran block in Iraq’s parliament rushed to Baghdad’s Green Zone Monday confronting their political opposition and demanding their preferred candidate for Mohammed Al Sudani be sworn in immediately.
Activists and party officials from Al Sudani’s Coordination Framework said backers of the populist Iraqi Shia leader Muqtada al-Sadr were trampling the country’s constitution by disrupting a legally elected legislature.
Protests spread to cities south of Baghdad, as the Sadarists rallied to stop what they say is a corrupt elite running the Coordination Framework.
They accuse their rivals of looting the country’s oil wealth as millions go without electricity for hours and struggle to find health and educational services.
Meanwhile, Coordination Framework activists picketed the residence of caretaker prime minister Al Kadhimi, saying he was sitting idle as “lawless” Sadrists occupied parliament.
Al Kadhimi has vowed to remain neutral in the stand-off and pleaded for dialogue and restraint by security forces.
– Soundbite (Ibrahim Al-Sarraj – Coordination Framework member):
“Disrupting the sessions of Parliament and legislative authority, has created a new political crisis to add to the crises afflicting Iraqis. Today is supposed to have a serious dialogue of mutual understanding aimed to resolve the crisis and reach an agreement among political blocs. I think taking to the streets can have serious repercussions for all the protesters. Dialogue is the real solution to resolving the crisis.”
– Soundbite (Mujashea al-Tamimi – Political analyst with close relations to Sadrist movement): “Muqtada al-Sadr is determined to continue the sit-in until his demands are met, which include reforming the political process and resolving this crisis, which should be done through dialogue with parties that have credibility. Muqtada al-Sadr signed an agreement with political blocs that obligates to reform the political process, but unfortunately they deflected after results were announced. For this reason, Muqtada al-Sadr, wants real guarantees this time around to ensure change to the process of government and the politics in Iraq, as well as hold politicians accountable for causing this decline, misspending and mismanagement.”