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Allawi aims to quickly form Iraqi government

April 7th, 2010
12:17 PM ET

By Tom Evans; Sr. Writer, AMANPOUR.

(CNN) - Hours after insurgents killed dozens of people on Tuesday in a new wave of bomb attacks in Baghdad, former Iraqi Prime Minister Ayad Allawi said he hopes to soon form a new government after claiming victory in the March 7 ballot.

"We need the (election) results to be officially announced by the Supreme Court, and then I guess it will take us in the range of two months to form ... I hope to form ... a government," Allawi told CNN's Christiane Amanpour.

Allawi said he believes his Iraqiya bloc, which has a narrow two-seat lead in parliament over his main rival, has the right to form the next government under the country's constitution. Iraqiya won 91 seats and current Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki's State of the Law coalition won 89 seats, according to the provisional election results.

"We can't just have a national unity government, a government which has been stagnant as the current government has been," he said. "We need to have a government that can function and can provide, especially for the security of this country."

His comments came amid new concerns that security in Iraq is beginning to unravel in what many say is a political vacuum following the elections.

Insurgents exploded at least seven bombs in Baghdad on Tuesday, killing more than 30 people and wounding 140 others. It was the latest in a series of attacks that have killed more than 100 people in five days.

"I expected this violence, especially after the elections, because there is a vacuum, and there is indeed a constitutional vacuum at this time," Allawi said. "And indeed the terrorists and groups who are linked to terrorism would find the political environment useful for them to start damaging and inflicting more damage on the Iraqi people."

Former U.S. National Security Council official Brett McGurk said Iraq has not seen any signposts of real deterioration despite the upsurge in violence.

"We haven't seen militias take to the streets to protect neighborhoods," he said. "We've not seen the ministries stand down, things we started to see in 2006."

Allawi said the success of his bloc in the elections showed that the Iraqi people were fed up with sectarianism.

"They want to see a secular country with a professional, functional government, and they want to get out of the bottleneck that we are in now," he said.

He rejected the arguments of critics who say Allawi's bloc is a front organization for former Baathists who served in the Saddam Hussein regime.

"The Baath .. are finished. It's ended. We are in a new era," he said.

See more of Amanpour's coverage online

Allawi said he was talking to other political parties about the formation of a new government coalition - including supporters of the influential Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, whose followers won some 40 seats in parliament.

"The Sadrists are welcome to join it," he said. "We are talking to them already. And the discussions are progressing well."

Allawi said there was a big difference between political supporters of al-Sadr and its once powerful Jaish al-Mahdi militia.

The former U.S. Ambassador to Iraq, Ryan Crocker, said he was not concerned about the potential role of al-Sadr's supporters in a coalition government.

Crocker said: "The Sadrists have always had an appeal to the dispossessed urban Shia populations, and they finally found a way to get their act together sufficiently to garner a respectable number of seats."

"But clearly they are not going to form a government," he said. "They may be instrumental in the government's formation, but they're going to have to be part of the give-and-take of Iraqi politics as well."

Crocker, however, said he believed Allawi was being overly optimistic when he said he could form a government in two months.

"I think a more realistic deadline is the beginning of Ramadan at the start of August," Crocker said. "So I worry about a decision to have us down to 50,000 (American) troops perhaps in the same month that a new government is formed."

Crocker was referring to the planned withdrawal of all U.S. combat troops from Iraq by the end of August, leaving a residual force of 50,000 troops until a final U.S. withdrawal scheduled for the end of 2011.

Filed under:  Iraq
soundoff (11 Responses)
  1. Firat Tas

    I think that Mr. Allawi should stop thinking of the Irani goverment, and start solving the problem that Iraqi people are facing. The civil car between Sunni & Shir´. The Kurds have almost here own homeland in Northern part of Iraq.- Kurdistan.

    Stop the mass killing, between the groups and solve it. Iran will always be op on Iraq problems.

    April 7, 2010 at 1:42 pm | Reply
  2. Mulkah Adebayo

    May Allah help us all Ameen

    April 7, 2010 at 1:48 pm | Reply
  3. Mrs. Smith

    I think the obvious leader for Iraq is Mr. Allawi, he is the only Nationalist, the only one who wants to build a country and not a shrine to himself and he is the only one who is unifying the Sunnis and Shiits. May Allah give him strength to combat the self serving forces of Maliki and Chalabi.

    April 7, 2010 at 3:50 pm | Reply
  4. Free American

    It will be very sad indeed if the only way to have stability in Iraq is to have another Saddam in power where the mass killings( and ethnic cleansing) are done secretly instead of the open market bombs that are encouraged by the Worldwide WAR INDUSTRY.
    Iraq/Iran problems may be solved when the Iraqi government apologizes for the invasion of Iran by Saddam (a war where a million were killed) and when Iraq guarantees that there will be no more aggressions from its soil which I suspect is the main reason why Iran is pursuing the "Shock & Awe" Bomb! After all; Iran was previously invaded by the Russians and the British and they had suffered the most under the Shah that was installed by NON-Iranians.

    April 7, 2010 at 4:39 pm | Reply
  5. fezzepo

    Why do we fear iran? have they waged agressive war agains anyone? do they threaten other nations with invasion or nuclear warheads like america does? They are only guilty of aggressive political rhetoric...and would that be considered a crime? aren't there many neo-nazis/ white supremisist in America who deny the holocaust? The USA policy trys to emulate Roman imperial policy... the US helps terrorism IN OTHER COUNTRYS and so does IRAN, as the help the TALIBAN. Iran like other nations has the rights to not play ball with the US and as the Monroe Doctrine DICTATED that no Power should Interfere within the US sphere of influence i.e SOUTH AMERICA. Why should the US interfere with IRANS sphere of influence. How would americans feel if RUSSIA invades and defeated Canada and Mexico and threathed america with nuclear strike? The actions of the USA in reality justifys IRANS ambishions to go Nuclear as if it did USA would not be able to bully it anymore... remember Israel has nuclear weapons. Every nation should be Entitle to Nuclear as long as other posess them.

    April 9, 2010 at 10:45 am | Reply
    • Kuldeep

      Dan Cooper,The deflection shcmee employed by Aipac and its fellow travellers, to distract American public awareness of Israeli repression of the Palestinians by frightening those same Americans with false claims about Ahmadinejad, have been all too effective as you clearly see. Many reasonably well-informed Americans (by US standards) think Ahamdinejad wants to annihilate Israel by nuclear weapons in a first strike attack. Astonishing rubbish is swallowed wholesale.

      July 9, 2012 at 2:55 am | Reply
  6. ross

    iran is growing ever more powerful and the old global powers are growing weaker. this is the reason why u.s and russia are flexing their political muscle positioning their pawns on the global chess board. people used sad propaganda about area 51 for decades like aliens and such. who are they kidding thats the u.s' nuclear war head factory. the global down turn means the u.s nor russia can afford to run these nuclear plants so their using plotical rhetoric to stop nations like iran and china from producing these weapons. the sad reality is iran is trying to feed its people with out the benfit of international economies. nuclear energy produced in iran will only benfit iran, it would mean self sufficiency. the un and the eu have been trying to prevent self sufficiency for decades with treaties and sanctions but what sanctions can really effect iran they dont trade with the u.s they have no interest in the u.s. america needs to relise they are not the global referee. you can sign as many treaties as you want but iran and china are not listening. they dont care their economies are improving and the only way you can stop iran or china is through war and the u.s and russia will not fight a war they can not afford in lives and money. if extremists do not care for life in society then fighting a religious war would not be a problem. within the borders of america and russia the people are getting restless they tired of their goverments battling foreign wars when they should concentrate on their own internal problems. afghanistan is not a war on terror but as barrack says a war of necessity and that necessity is medical. their is a global shortage on morphine and they are their for the raw material same reason as vietnam. they have exhausted iraqs resources and now they are leaving and iraq is in a worse political religious and economical situation than it was 10 years ago. nothing has changed.

    April 9, 2010 at 3:46 pm | Reply
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