Iraqis Debate Strategic Council


BAGHDAD, Aug. 12 (UPI) — Though disagreements over the details of a strategic policy council remain, Sunni-backed lawmakers in Iraq said a draft law on the measure is a good first step.

Former interim Iraqi Prime Minister Iyad Allawi led the Iraqiya slate to a narrow victory in 2010 parliamentary elections. The Sunni-backed alliance was unable to generate enough support to form a new government, however, handing Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki a second term.

Iraqi leaders are considering a National Council for Strategic Policies, a post that would be tasked with checking the powers of the prime minister.

Ahmad Masari, a lawmaker with Iraqiya, told Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty’s Radio Free Iraq bureau that there were outstanding issues concerning how committee members would be seated.

A draft law on establishing the council had its first reading in Parliament this week, RFE/RL adds.

Members of the prime minister’s State of Law party say they are worried the council may act as “a government within the government,” noting the debated bill contains some articles that could be in violation of the country’s constitution.

Maysoon al-Damaluji, a spokeswoman for Iraqiya, told the news agency, however, that getting the bill read in parliament was a good first step.

The security council isn’t part of the current constitution so lawmakers need to draft a new law for its creation.

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