Oct 13, 2022 - World

Iraqi parliament elects Abdul Latif Rashid as new president

Abdul Latif Rashid

Abdul Latif Rashid is elected Iraq's new president on Oct. 13. Photo: Murtadha Al-Sudani/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

The Iraqi parliament on Thursday elected Kurdish former minister Abdul Latif Rashid to be the country's next president, AP reported.

Why it matters: The vote was a sign of progress after a year of deep political deadlock that prevented the formation of a new government, AP reported. It took place shortly after rockets rained down on Baghdad's Green Zone and injured at least five people.

  • Latif won 162 votes out of 261 cast. Outgoing President Barham Salih received the remaining 99 votes.
  • No group has yet taken responsibility for the rocket attacks, per the New York Times.

State of play: In accordance with Iraq's power-sharing political system, the presidency is reserved for Kurds, the prime minister is Shiite and the speaker of parliament is Sunni, per the Times.

  • Latif served as water resources minister between 2003 and 2010.
  • The Coordination Framework, an Iran-backed coalition of Shiite parties, named Mohammed Shia al-Sudani as the prime minister-designate.
  • Al-Sudani, who was previously the country's human rights and labor minister, now has 30 days to propose to parliament his choices for the new cabinet, per the Times.

The big picture: Iraq held early elections in October 2021 but political deadlock, primarily among Shiite parties, prevented the formation of a new government and sparked worries of potential civil war.

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