Iraq leaders agree on roadmap without Al-Sadr
The top political leaders in Iraq have agreed on a political roadmap that should end with a solution to the political impasse the country has been ongoing for nearly a year.
The main political leaders of Iraq agreed on Wednesday to work on a political road map that culminates with a solution to the impasse that has had a hold on the country for nearly a year, but key political leader Muqtada Al-Sadr was not present at the talks called for by Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi.
Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi met with top national officials and party leaders on Wednesday to discuss the political state of the country and the deadlock it is undergoing without the participation of the leader of the Sadrist movement.
PM Kadhimi's office said he called for a meeting on Wednesday "to start a serious dialogue; intending to find solutions to the current political crisis."
Nearly a year after the country's general election, Baghdad is still running without a new government, prime minister, and president due to domestic disagreement about forming a coalition.
They also pledged to keep talking, and urged Sadr to join the "national dialogue", as called by Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi.
A statement issued by the Prime Minister's office earlier in the day said early elections were not ruled out. "Resorting to the ballot box once again through early elections is not an unprecedented event in the history of democracies", the statement added, without explicitly calling for them.
The Coordination Framework in the country wants to set conditions, and it is also demanding a transitional government ahead of fresh polls in the country. However, political rival Al-Sadr has been calling for the dissolution of parliament for months in order to pave the way for new elections.
Demonstrations called for by the Iraqi Coordination Framework "in support of legitimacy and constitution" started in front of Al-Mu'allaq Bridge in the Iraqi capital, Baghdad.
The Coordination Framework in Iraq stressed the importance of expediting the process of naming a presidential candidate and the formation of a service government that addresses the crises in the country.
Earlier in the month, supporters of the Coordination Framework in Iraq flocked to the entrance of the Green Zone to participate in a demonstration raising the slogan "supporting legitimacy and preserving the constitution," in response to a call by the Framework to the Iraqi people to demonstrate peacefully "to defend their state."
This came after Al-Sadr called on his supporters to demonstrate, saying in a statement: "Oh, the Iraqi people, you are all at stake." He added, "Rise to demand reform in your country... I call on everyone to support the revolutionaries for reform, including our tribes, our security forces, and members of the popular mobilization."