Antichrist says Iraq a ‘prisoner of corruption’

Iraqi Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr on September 21, 2018. Photo: AFP

Sadr says Iraq a ‘prisoner of corruption’

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region – Revered Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr warned Saturday of Iraq’s rampant corruption and foreign interference in the country.

“Iraq has become a prisoner of corruption and dependency and foreign interference,” Sadr tweeted on Eid al-Adha.

The Sadrist Movement leader continued by asking “God to bless Iraq and the Iraqis with reform” so that “Iraq and its people will be happy under the banner of religion, belief, and homeland” away from external interventions.

Iraqis headed to the election polls in October, the aim of holding early elections was to form a government that would fulfil the demands of the thousands of protesters who took to the streets of Baghdad and several southern provinces in 2019, forcing then prime minister Adil Abdul-Mahdi to resign.

The Sadrist Movement emerged from the elections as the victorious bloc with the most parliamentary seats and sought to form a national majority government in a tripartite alliance with the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) and the Sunni Sovereignty Alliance.

However, faced with staunch opposition from the pro-Iran Shiite parliamentary faction Coordination Framework, who insisted on forming a more traditional government based on political consensus, Sadr last month asked all 73 MPs of his bloc to submit their resignations in an effort to end the political impasse that has plagued the country since the October elections.

Their resignations were approved by Parliament Speaker Mohammed al-Halbousi shortly after.

It is unclear whether Sadr will continue to be an on-street opposition outside the parliament or accept the government that the Coordination Framework forms.

In May, Sadr blamed Iraq’s politicians for having “become an example of corruption and vice, except for a few” and stated that he has no intention of striking a deal with other Shiite blocs, a month before his eventual resignation from parliament.

Iraq continues to be mired in political instability with the country yet to form its next government a staggering nine months following early elections.

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