Hezbollah official in Iraq to discuss upcoming government

A senior official from Lebanese Shia militia Hezbollah has arrived in Iraq to engage in political talk on efforts to form the upcoming Iraqi government, informed sources were quoted saying Thursday.

Shafaaq News website quoted the sources saying that Mohamed Kawtharani, Hezbollah’s official in charge of the Iraqi file, arrived Wednesday in Baghdad to meet up with Shia politicians and discuss efforts to form the next Iraqi government.

“Kawtharani will convey Hezbollah’s views regarding the Iraqi government’s formation,” according to the sources.

Negotiations for alliances among Iraqi political groups are underway to form the biggest parliament bloc and form the coming Iraqi government, the first after the ouster of Islamic State militants.

Iraqi Shia cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, whose list came first in the parliament elections last month, declared earlier this month an alliance with Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi’s list. Both leaders have frequently touted future policies free from foreign intervention.

Shia Iran is understood to have a significant influence over Shia political groups in Lebanon and Iraq, but observers believe the Islamic republic has started to feel unease with Iraqi politicians promoting independent decision-making.

The results of parliament elections had been surrounded with claims of forgery that the judiciary has recently ordered a manual recount of vote.

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