Monday, May 28, 2007


Sadrists won't vote on six new candidates for ministerial positions

(Voices of Iraq) - The Sadrist bloc, or members of parliament loyal to Shiite leader Muqtada al-Sadr, will not vote on the six candidates proposed to occupy their former ministerial portfolios on the grounds that they are not "technocratic enough," a spokesman for the Sadrists said on Saturday.
The six ministerial positions became vacant after Sadr withdrew his six ministers from the government of Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki in April 2007 in protest against its failure to come up with a timetable for the withdrawal of foreign troops and to provide necessary services for Iraqis.
"Our objection did not rest on the fact that we are members of the Sadrist bloc but rather as members of the Iraqi parliament. The ministers of the Sadrist bloc were better than the new candidates from both practical and independence perspectives," spokesman Nassar al-Rubaie told the independent news agency Voices of Iraq (VOI) during a parliamentary session on Sunday.
He said some of the new candidates have been outside Iraq for more than 25 years. Maliki, during a session of the Iraqi parliament on Thursday, proposed the names of the candidates to fill the ministerial vacancies left by the six ministers loyal to leader Sadr last month. The Sadrist members of parliament are part of the Shiite Unified Iraqi Coalition (UIC), the largest bloc with 30 seats out of the total 275.

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