Report: Tension escalates in Iraq
BAGHDAD, Feb. 19 (Xinhua) -- The Independent High
Electoral Commission of Iraq (IHEC) announced on Thursday the final results of
the landmark provincial elections.
The final results showed that Prime Minister Nuri
al-Maliki's Dawlat al-Qanun (State of Law) coalition comes ahead in Baghdad and
five southern provinces.
Maliki's best results were in Baghdad and Basra,
where his coalition won 28 seats of Baghdad's 57 seats and 20 seats out of 36 in
the oil hub city of Basra.
Earlier in February, preliminary results covering 90
percent of the ballot showed that Maliki's coalition came first in Baghdad and
eight southern provinces.
Maliki's rival powerful Shiite Islamic Supreme
Council of Iraq (ISCI), headed by Abdul Aziz Hakim, hardly regained power in the
three Shiite provinces of Najaf, Maysan and Dhi Qar, where the final results
showed that Maliki and Hakim divided equal seats.
On Jan. 31, millions of Iraqis headed to cast
their ballots in polling stations across 14 out of the 18 Iraqi provinces
to choose their leaders in provincial councils. ¡¡
Iraqi parliament fails to elect new speaker
BAGHDAD, Feb. 19 (Xinhua) -- Iraq's parliament failed to elect a new speaker after its second round of secret ballot on Thursday, a parliament official said.
"The lawmakers held their second round of secret ballot to vote in a new speaker, but they failed to choose any of the two candidates for the speaker post," an official in the parliament media office told Xinhua. Full story