On Thursday 11th November, The Iraqi parliament elected Sunni politician Osama al-Nujaifi as parliament speaker, re-elected the Kurd Jalal Talabani as president and re-nominated Nouri al-Maliki to form a new cabinet.
Qusay Al-Suhail of the Al-Sadr movement and Aref Tayfour of Iraqi Kurds were also elected as the first and second deputy speakers respectively. The head of al-Iraqiyya, the former prime minister, Iyad Allawi, will head a new Council for National Strategy
Ban Ki Moon, Secretary General of the UN, called the agreement, a “major step forward in the country’s democratic process.”
Negotiations on the formation of the government have been going on since the holding of parliamentary elections in March.
At least 12 million people cast their votes and more than 6,000 candidates took part in the polls, in which the party headed by Iyad Allawi, a former prime minister, received more votes than the coalition led by Nouri al-Maliki in the 325-member Council of Representatives.