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Iraq Vice President vetoes new election law

Written by: on 18th November 2009 |
Tarek Al Hashemi
Iraq Vice President vetoes new election law  | read this item

One of Iraq’s two vice-presidents has vetoed part of the country’s new election law, putting the parliamentary polls scheduled for January in doubt. Tariq al-Hashemi, a Sunni Arab, revoked Article 1 of the law and called for the representation in parliament of displaced people to increase to 15%.

Most Iraqis who have fled violence since 2003 are thought to be Sunni. Electoral officials say they have suspended preparations for a January vote until an amended law is approved.

“As a result of the veto, we have decided to stop all our activities and work as we await a final law with a presidential decree that determines the exact date of the election,” Hamdiya al-Hussaini, of the Independent Electoral Commission, told the Reuters news agency.

The commission requires 60 days notice to prepare for the vote, which had been scheduled to be held between 18 and 23 January. Constitutionally, it must be held before the end of that month.

The election is seen as a prerequisite to the US meeting its goal of pulling out combat troops by 31 August 2010, ahead of a full withdrawal by the end of 2011.

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