Monday, August 06, 2007

Five More Ministers Begin Iraq Boycott

By Cernig

There are now no Sunni ministers left in Nour al-Maliki's coaltion government. Today, the Iraqiya List ministers loyal to former Prime Minister Ayad Allawi have announced that they will begin a boycott of cabinet involvement until their demands for political reform issued five months ago are addressed.
Lawmaker Hussam al-Azawi...of the Iraqiya List, said the boycott began with Monday's Cabinet meeting.

``Our ministers did not attend, because our block has several demands that have not been met. We demanded broader political participation by all Iraqis to achieve real national reconciliation ... and an end to sectarian favoritism,'' al-Azawi said.

The boycott raises to 17 the number of government ministers who have either suspended membership or quit this year.

...The Iraqiya List is represented in the government by Justice Minister Hashim al-Shibli, a Sunni; Science and Technology Minister Raid Fahmi, a Sunni; Human Rights Minister Wijdan Michael, a Christian; Communications Minster Mohammed Tawfiq, a Shiite, and State Minister for Tribal Affairs Mohammed Abbas al-Oraibi, a Shiite.
Those two Sunnis were the last Sunni ministers in Maliki's cabinet. All told, a third of the entire cabinet has walked out on Maliki this year.

And the Bush spin? State Department spokesman Sean McCormack told the AP that "There's a very healthy political debate that is going on in Iraq, and that is good." I kid you not.

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