Iraqi parliament delays next session until August

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Associated Press

Posted on July 7, 2014 at 1:33 PM

Updated Monday, Jul 7 at 3:03 PM

BAGHDAD (AP) — Iraqi political leaders remain deadlocked -- and the country's parliament has now postponed its next session until mid-August.

That will delay the formation of a new government for weeks, despite the threat from extremists who have seized control of a large chunk of the country and have declared the establishment of an Islamic state.

Lawmakers met last week for the new parliament's first session since the April elections. But the meeting ended without agreement on a new prime minister, president and parliament speaker. The legislature had been expected to meet again tomorrow, but that session has been called off because no progress has been made in untangling the political situation.

The United States and other world powers have pressed for the formation of a new government, and so has the country's top Shiite cleric. Many Iraqi politicians are pushing for the removal of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki. They blame his pro-Shiite leadership for alienating the Sunni minority and fueling support for the insurgency.

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APPHOTO BAG104: In this Sunday, July 6, 2014 picture, displaced Iraqis who have fled from Baqouba and other towns after advances by Islamic militants, wait for food distribution at a camp in Khanaqin, 90 miles (140 kilometers) northeast of Baghdad, Iraq. (AP Photo/ Adam Hadei) (7 Jul 2014)

<<APPHOTO BAG104 (07/07/14)££

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