BAGHDAD — Iraq's parliament gave a vote of confidence Thursday evening to incoming Prime Minister Muhammad Shia al-Sudani and his cabinet of 21 ministers,.
In his speech prior to the vote, Sudani described the economic and political priorities of his government.
“The world is witnessing tremendous political and economic changes and conflicts, which will add new challenges to our country,” Sudani said. “We will ... do our utmost to succeed in addressing these challenges."
Iraq's strategic location, regional stature and influence in the world economy give it the opportunity to establish good relations "with neighboring countries and Arab and friendly countries,” he added.
Sudani presented his government's program to the parliament, which was approved as well. The program focused on dialogue regarding international forces in Iraq, supporting and developing the Popular Mobilization Forces, and ending the spread of uncontrolled weapons.
The program also states that the government will work on amending the electoral law within three months and will organize early elections within one year.
The following figures were appointed to lead ministries:
- Health: Salih Mahdi
- Finance: Taif Sami
- Interior: Abdul Amir Al-Shimmery
- Water Resources: Aoun Diab
- Electricity: Ziad Ali Fadhil Sudani
- Oil: Hayyan Abdul Ghani
- Youth and Sports: Ahmad Al-Mubarqa’
- Agriculture: Abbas Jabr
- Transport: Razzaq Muhaibis
- Labor and Social Affairs: Ahmad Al-Asadi
- Communications: Hoyam Abboud
- Higher Education: Na’im Al-Abboudi
- Planning: Muhammad Tamim
- Culture and Antiquities: Ahmad Fakkak Ahmad
- Defense: Thabit Muhammad
- Education: Ibrahim Namis
- Industry: Khalid Battal
- Trade: Athir Daowd Salman
- Justice: Khalid Shawani
- Foreign Affairs: Fuad Hussein
- Immigration: Ivan Faiq
The participating political parties are the State of Law Coalition, the Fatah Coalition, Asa'ib Ahl al-Haq, the Taqadum Party led by Parliament Speaker Muhammad al-Halbusi, the Azm Alliance led by Khamis Khanjar and Muthanna al-Samarrai, the Patriotic Union Kurdistan, the Kurdistan Democratic Party, and the Babylon Movement led by Ryan al-Kildani.
The Sadrist Movement, led by Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr and which withdrew from the parliament this past June, did not participate in the cabinet.
The independent members of the parliament also did not participate. Some of them boycotted the session and some others raised objections against the new government during the session, claiming the new government was a corrupt entity formed based on sectarian quotas.