Sadr Won’t Back Maliki if Reforms Not Expedited
|June 26, 2012||Filled under Iraq Daily News|
NAJAF Cleric Moqtada Al Sadr, head of a powerful movement in Iraq, on Sunday called for more political reforms, saying he would back a no-confidence vote against the prime minister if they were not made.
Sadr is now an influential player in government after his bloc’s support of Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri Al Maliki helped secure his position.
“Our main demand and the last demand is reforms,” Sadr told journalists during a news conference at his family home in Najaf, southern Iraq.
“I said and I am still saying that there is a promise from me to the other blocs if the votes for a no-confidence motion reach 124, my 40 votes are with them.”
He did not elaborate on what kind of political reforms he would like to see and said he would only support a no-confidence vote provided it did not prove harmful to Iraqis.
The ruling National Alliance was formed when Maliki’s party linked with Sadrists and other groups.
Sadr has criticised Maliki over the political crisis and the premier’s opponents say he is amassing power they fear could turn Iraq into a dictatorship like that of Saddam Hussein.
“I once told Maliki: You reached your chair through political blocs,” Sadr said.
Sadr said a vote of no confidence against Maliki could not be used as an excuse for government not to deliver services to Iraqi people and said differences between the leaders were long-standing.
“Ending the crisis is a difficult thing with these differences and tensions but we try and hope that there will be an end to the crisis,” he said.
“I have said already that there should be some concessions by some sides in order to solve the problems. Without these concessions, it is impossible to solve these problems.”
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