IraqMiddle East

Iraqi PM-designate pledges to name ‘independent’ cabinet this week

Iraq's Prime Minister-designate Mohammed Tawfiq Allawi has vowed to announce this week his cabinet made up of "independent" and "impartial" figures.

“We’re nearing a historic achievement: completing an independent cabinet of competent and impartial people, without the intervention of any political party,” he said in a post on his Twitter account on Saturday.

He also pledged to “submit the names of these ministers within the current week.”

Allawi, who was appointed as Iraqi premier in early February, has until March 2 to submit his cabinet to a parliamentary vote.

“We hope members of the parliament will respond and vote on them in order to start implementing the people’s demands,” he emphasized.

The appointment of Allawi followed an ultimatum by President Barham Salih, who said he would pick a new premier himself if political parties did not agree on a candidate.

Iraqi president appoints Mohammed Tawfiq Allawi as new premier

Iraqi president appoints Mohammed Tawfiq Allawi as new premierThe Iraqi president has appointed Mohammed Tawfiq Allawi as the Arab country’s new prime minister.

Since October, Iraqis have staged street protests in several cities over unemployment and a lack of basic services, demanding the removal of the ruling political elite as well as early elections.

The demonstrations, however, took a violent turn later, with some participants vandalizing public property and opening fire on demonstrators during the mayhem.

Reports say more than 550 people have been killed and about 25,000 injured in the course of the violent protests.

The anti-government protests also led to the resignation of prime minister Adil Abdul-Mahdi in late November.

Upon his appointment, Allawi expressed support for the rallies and pledged justice for those killed in the violence.

He also promised to create jobs, fight corruption, and form a government free of sectarianism and factionalism before leading the country to early parliamentary elections.

Allawi is endorsed by influential Iraqi cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, who leads the largest parliamentary bloc Sairoon (Alliance Towards Reform).

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