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Iraq’s top court ratifies election results, declares secularist Iraqiya bloc biggest winner

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Iraq’s top court ratifies election results, declares secularist Iraqiya bloc biggest winner

Post  Shilo on Wed Jun 02, 2010 6:56 am

June 1, 2010 · Posted in NEWS

Associated Press

BAGHDAD (AP) — Iraq’s Supreme Court on Tuesday ratified the results of the nation’s March 7 parliamentary election, officially declaring the secular Iraqiya alliance the vote’s biggest winner.

The televised announcement by the court’s top judge marked the first major step toward resolving Iraq’s election crisis and the seating of a new parliament. But the government impasse remains far from over, and it could still take weeks, perhaps months, before lawmakers elect new leaders.

The March vote left the country without a clear winner, as none of Iraq’s six major political coalitions won a majority in the 325-seat legislature.

The confusion has led to nearly three months of ballot recounts, charges of fraud and court challenges.

Nearly all were brought by the State of Law alliance led by Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki.

Iraqiya, heavily backed by Iraq’s Sunni Arab minority, is led by former Prime Minister Ayad Allawi, a secular Shiite. Iraqiya won 91 seats, two more than the State of Law.

Iraq’s next government will oversee the departure of U.S. troops from Iraq. The number of American forces is scheduled to shrink to about 50,000 by the end of August. All U.S. troops will leave by the end of 2011.

Many Iraqis — as well as U.S. and U.N. officials — have expressed frustration with the legal wrangling that has delayed the court’s final election approval.

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