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Shafaq News/ The American "Washington Institute" criticized the Iraqi calls to "change" the political system and amend the constitution in order to convert it into a presidential system, wondering if the existing parliamentary system is really the reason for the failure of Iraq's stability.
In a report seen by Shafaq News agency, the American Institute considered that what is happening now in Iraq as a political system has nothing to do with the system defined by the 2005 constitution, but what is a "parallel state and system" established by sectarian political parties, to comply with their interests.
The peg of the parliamentary system
He pointed out that since the vote on the Iraqi constitution in 2005, many were quick to blame the "ineffective" parliamentary system for being the reason behind all the crises that Iraq is going through, adding that these criticisms emerged recently after supporters of the Sadrist movement stormed the parliament building and sat in it, demanding Muqtada al-Sadr to change the constitution and the political system.
The report added that this call was followed by similar statements and positions from many forces, including the League of the Righteous, led by Qais Khazali, which renewed talk about the necessity of adopting the presidential system, describing this system as "appropriate for Iraq." The former deputy leader in the movement, Naim al-Aboudi, Minister of Higher Education, said And the current scientific research in his post, "The reform of the political system has become a more urgent demand than ever before."
He explained that the call for the formation of a presidential or semi-presidential system in Iraq is not unique, as it was previously launched by Sheikh Qais Khazali in 2012, and the “Emtidad” movement emanating from the popular youth movement in 2019 called for changing the system of government in Iraq from parliamentary to Presidential or semi-presidential to get out of the current political crisis plaguing the country.
The "Extension" movement said in a statement that one of the most important principles adopted by the movement since its founding is: amending the constitution and changing the form of the regime to a presidential or semi-presidential one. By the people directly, it can end the quota system, which has become obstructing any reform movement in Iraq.
A strange paradox
However, the American report considered that the strange irony in this matter is that the two conflicting parties in Iraq see that the regime is the cause of government failure in Iraq.
He pointed out that although the existing 2005 constitution included many chapters, including basic principles, the form of the state, the government, public and political rights and freedoms, freedom of society, intellectual freedoms, the three federal authorities and independent bodies, and the authorities of the regions and governorates, there are figures such as Khazali who believe that The main reason behind the failure of political parties is the system, not the performance of the parties. Khazali is also convinced of the right of the Shiites to monopolize power, as they are the largest component in the country.
He added that when analyzing politics in Iraq in the post-2003 era, observers must ask themselves: Is the parliamentary system really the reason for the failure of Iraq's stability?
system and parallel state
The report added that the follower of Iraqi affairs and the political process there after the events of 2003 and the fall of the previous regime will realize that what is being dealt with as a political regime in Iraq is not the regime that determined the constitution of Iraq for the year 2005, because what exists today is a system and a parallel state, where sectarian political parties worked To produce a system compatible with their interests away from the interests of the people, which is what made the Iraqi constitution a marginal thing and a set of formal procedures and nothing more.
In addition, the report stated that the political customs and "traditions" established by the various political forces in Iraq go beyond those constitutional procedures in order to keep the elite in power.
He pointed out that since the establishment of the constitution and the vote on it, the political forces preferred to follow other paths far from what was determined by the constitution, but rather adhered to the laws of previous authoritarian regimes.
actual parallel system
The Washington Institute stated that the deterioration of the constitutional structure in Iraq and the political parties' marginalization of the main laws has become a matter of particular concern, especially after some political parties worked to marginalize the constitution and its complementary laws such as the Oil and Gas Law (Article 110) and the Border Crossings Management Law and dozens of others. From other articles in order to guarantee their interests and their position in power.
The report considered that this led to the creation of administrative chaos in the country and the creation of long-term crises and disputes between the federal government and the Kurdistan Region on how to manage and its imports.
The report pointed to the failure of Iraqi political parties to abide by important constitutional conditions such as Article 38 of the constitution, which emphasized basic freedoms such as freedom of expression, freedom of peaceful assembly, and peaceful demonstration.
He added that the existing political parties preferred the dictatorial legacy over the new constitution and did not work to legislate laws related to those rights, but instead adhered to dictatorial laws such as Article 228 of the Iraqi Penal Code of 1969, which would silence mouths and undermine freedom of expression.
Political parties have also worked to produce a "distorted" federal state through the judiciary. Instead of acting as an unbiased mediator between parties and federal entities, the federal court system has become a mere extension of party interests and corrupting sectarian dynamics.
The report said that after the constitution was manipulated by political parties, the judiciary began to interpret the articles of the constitution according to its interests.
The report cited examples of this, such as the judiciary’s interpretation of Article 73 related to the concept of the “largest bloc.” This concept had previously sparked a major dispute in the 2010 parliamentary elections between the first winning bloc, the Iraqi bloc affiliated with Iyad Allawi (91 seats), and the second winning bloc, the Iyad Allawi bloc. State of Law for Nuri al-Maliki (89 seats), although Allawi got the most seats, the Federal Court, under pressure from al-Maliki, interpreted the largest bloc as the bloc that is formed in Parliament, and al-Maliki formed the government at the time, and won a second term, which led to a change of course democracy in the country and harm it.
Dismantle the parallel system
The report concluded by saying that although the constitution was not given a real opportunity to be applied on the ground, the government still has an opportunity to achieve greater success in this regard through careful application of the constitution and sincere commitment to its provisions, and work to cancel the radical amendments that occurred in the political system.
He continued, saying that although the demand for the formation of a presidential system may be a realistic demand in light of the current Iraqi context, it is important to understand that the 2005 constitution has not been tested yet, and there is certainly no justification for politicians and activists to call for its abolition.
The report concluded by saying that the current system is "a system and a parallel state, one of which was produced by the parties and manipulated over the years away from the law and according to their interests."
He added that while the parties blamed the government structure, the authorities did not move a finger, but sought partisan and personal gains at the expense of the dignity of their country and citizens.
The report called on all competent authorities, such as the Federal Supreme Court and Parliament, to work to dismantle the parallel system while preserving the Iraqi constitution itself and keeping it away from the whims and narrow interests of sectarian party politics.
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