Iraqi PM Loses Election; Supporters Threaten Violence

UN condones votes, al-Maliki calls result 'not final'
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 26, 2010 3:00 PM CDT
Iraqi PM Loses Election; Supporters Threaten Violence
Former Iraqi Prime Minister Ayad Allawi speaks to his supporters after the full election results released Friday for Iraq's 325-seat parliament show Allawi winning 91 seats, edging out Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki's 89 seats in Baghdad, Iraq, Friday, March 26, 2010.   (AP Photo/ Khalid Mohammed)

Iraq's fragile democracy is in danger after vote counts released today showed Nouri al-Maliki narrowly lost the election. The current PM's party lost to Ayad Allawi's Iraqiya, 91 to 89. Though the margin was slim, electoral observers and diplomats say the result was fair and largely free of fraud. Nonetheless, al-Maliki called the losing result "not final," and his supporters openly threatened violence if Allawi tries to take power before the completion of a recount.

"It is the UN's considered opinion that these elections have been credible and we congratulate the people of Iraq for this success," a United Nations rep in Iraq said. If the count holds up, Allawi, who is Shia but enjoys the favor of the Sunni community, has 30 days to form a government, the Telegraph reports.
(More Nouri al-Maliki stories.)

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