New Iraqi president is Kurdish leader Jalal Talabani

Discussion in 'Middle East - General' started by j07950, Apr 6, 2005.

  1. j07950
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    j07950 Member

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    Just wondering how they are all going to get along...!?!?

    http://edition.cnn.com/2005/WORLD/meast/04/06/iraq.main/index.html


    BAGHDAD, Iraq (CNN) -- Iraq's new transitional assembly took an expected but historic step Wednesday, electing Kurdish leader Jalal Talabani as the nation's president -- a symbol of the new Kurdish clout in the largely Arab nation.

    The vote was largely a formality and the role largely ceremonial, but the selection of a Kurdish president was a poignant, symbolic moment for a country where Kurds were persecuted under Saddam Hussein's Sunni Arab regime.

    Talabani, the longtime leader of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan, now has the title Saddam held before he was ousted from power two years ago.

    In a televised session made available to Saddam and 10 of his jailed henchmen, Talabani addressed the 275-member body, striking themes of unity among the country's different ethnicities and religions.

    "I will carry out my duties as head of the presidential council, and I will acknowledge your trust and trust of the Iraqi people, who have freely elected you in our free Iraq," Talabani told the body.

    Saddam and his 10 associates, all facing war crimes trials and long blacked out from seeing or reading the news, were allowed to watch a TV feed of the assembly meeting, Iraqi officials said.

    It has not been confirmed how much of the assembly session the men actually watched.

    "They will be seeing what's happening in Iraq for the first time since the fall of the regime," said Bakhtiar Amin, the country's interim human rights minister.

    Talabani, in what was essentially an inaugural address, paid tribute to the Kurds in the northern part of the country and the Shiites in the south, who died fighting the Saddam regime.

    Talabani envisioned reaching "national independence" for Iraq and "the circumstances in which we will no longer need the support and help of the multinational forces."

    "This will be achieved by fully building our Iraq security forces. All of this will lead Iraq to its normal position in the Arabic and Islamic world," he said.

    He stressed democracy and national unity, urged Iraq's neighbors to do more to thwart the insurgency, and said he favored laws with a secular underpinning but that respected Iraq's Islamic identity.

    Talabani said Iraq's experiment in democracy could have an impact beyond its borders, particularly mentioning the Palestinian issue.

    Along with Talabani, two deputy presidents were chosen by the assembly: Shiite Arab Adel Abdel Mahdi, a member of the United Iraqi Alliance who served as interim finance minister, and Sunni Arab Sheikh Ghazi al-Yawar, who served as the previous interim president.

    They are expected to be sworn in Thursday.

    The first duty of the three, who comprise what is called the presidency council, is to name a prime minister and a Cabinet, a choice that would have to be approved by the transitional assembly.

    Shiite leader Ibrahim al-Jaafari is expected to become prime minister on Thursday.

    Cabinet appointments have been allocated after weeks of hard political bargaining. Although many of the positions have been decided, it is not known who is envisioned for some key positions, including the oil and defense ministries.

    The main goal of the transitional government is to write a permanent constitution that will be put to the voters in a referendum later this year. If and when that is approved, a new, permanent government will be elected
     
  2. dmp
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    dmp Senior Member

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    I bet there will be a honeymoon phase...followed by some hard times...but in the end, things will work out. :)
     
  3. SmarterThanYou
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    I'm in complete amazement that they selected a kurd. :shocked:
     
  4. j07950
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    j07950 Member

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    That's what amazed me as well...we all know the other ethnic communities despise the Kurds because they have been protected for the last 10 years by the US, so what does this mean for them? As far as I can tell the 3 dominant ethnic groups hate each other...hummm
     

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