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Iraq’s politics of posters

A proliferation of political posters, especially of Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, as Iraq gears up for elections, brings back memories from Saddam Hussein's era.
Residents walk past an election poster promoting Nada al-Sudani (R) and Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki's State of Law coalition, in Baghdad February 12, 2010. Nada al-Sudani will be running as a candidate of the State of Law party during the March 7 parliamentary poll. REUTERS/Thaier al-Sudani (IRAQ - Tags: POLITICS ELECTIONS) - RTR2A4ZB
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Prominent Dawa Party leader Hassan Sinead opined that the spread of posters depicting Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki in streets, at checkpoints as well as in official and military institutions was “damaging to him [Maliki],” further noting that the culture of plastering photographs was “passe.”

Sinead's statement to the official Iraqi Media Network on Feb. 4 was vague and ambiguous, as it tried to evade identifying the phenomenon by name. By law, it is illegal to affix pictures of the prime minister inside official institutions, and plastering photos of political leaders is a bygone culture with "dictatorial roots" — an allusion that this leader, who possesses both a cultural and literary background, tried to avoid making.

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