Roger L. Simon

Iraq Gets a Kurdish President

From the NYT:

Iraq’s major political parties agreed this evening to appoint a president and two vice presidents at a meeting of the national assembly on Wednesday, according to a senior assembly leader, breaking a two-month deadlock in negotiations to form a new government.

The main Shiite and Kurdish political blocs have agreed to name Jalal Talabani, a Kurdish leader, as president; Adel Abdul Mahdi, a prominent Shiite Arab politician, as vice president; and Sheik Ghazi al-Yawar, the Sunni Arab president of the interim government, as the other vice president, said Hussein al-Shahristani, a vice speaker of the assembly.

The three officials, who will make up the presidency council, will have two weeks from their appointment to name a prime minister, who would then select a cabinet. The new government would have to be approved by a majority vote of the assembly, according to the interim constitution.

The agreement breaks an impasse between the main parties that had threatened to wreck the confidence built up during the Jan. 30 elections, when Iraqis defied insurgent threats to walk in droves to polling stations.

Sounds like another victory for democracy. (ht: Rick Ballard)