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WikiLeaks: 2006-05-15: 06BAGHDAD1613: Council of Representatives (CoR) Rank and File Grumble Over Government Formation

by WikiLeaks. 06BAGHDAD1613: May 15, 2006.

Posted: Sunday, February 19, 2012 at 04:25 PM UTC


Viewing cable 06BAGHDAD1613, COR RANK AND FILE GRUMBLE OVER GOVERNMENT FORMATION

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
06BAGHDAD1613 2006-05-15 13:26 2011-08-30 01:44 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy
Baghdad
VZCZCXRO4759
PP RUEHBC RUEHDE RUEHIHL RUEHKUK RUEHMOS
DE RUEHGB #1613/01 1351326
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 151326Z MAY 06
FM AMEMBASSY BAGHDAD
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 4465
INFO RUCNRAQ/IRAQ COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RHEHNSC/WHITE HOUSE NSC WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC PRIORITY
C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 BAGHDAD 001613 
 
SIPDIS 
 
SIPDIS 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 05/15/2026 
TAGS: PGOV PNAT KDEM IZ
SUBJECT: COR RANK AND FILE GRUMBLE OVER GOVERNMENT FORMATION 
 
Classified By: POLITICAL COUNSELOR ROBERT S. FORD,
 FOR REASONS 1.4 (B) AND (D). 
 
1.  (C) Summary. While their party leaders talked in more 
restricted settings, in May 14 conversations with PolOffs, 
a number of Council of Representatives (CoR) rank and file 
members expressed dissatisfaction with the ministerial 
positions they understood PM-designate Maliki had offered 
to their parties/blocs.   The CoR Chaldean Democratic Union 
Party leader complained about what he viewed as Kurdish 
double-dipping in putting forward Christian Kurd Fawzi 
Hariri for a ministerial position.  Iraqiyya members 
claimed to reject what they understood to be their bloc's 
ministerial package.  Inside the Shia Coalition, Fadhila 
Party members continued to gripe about the oil ministry. 
END SUMMARY 
 
--------------------------------------------- ---------- 
Chaldo-Assyrian: Christian Kurd Doesn't Represent other 
Christians 
--------------------------------------------- ---------- 
 
2.    (C) Chaldean Democratic Union Party leader and CoR 
member Abalhad Sawa (Kurdish List) told Poloff on May 14 
that he opposed the nomination of Fawzi Hariri to any 
ministerial post as the "Christian" minister.  Sawa said 
that if the Christians were allocated a ministerial 
position, it should be up to Christian leaders like himself 
and Assyrian Democratic Movement leader and CoR member 
Yonadam Kanna to make the nomination.  Though Sawa won his 
seat on the Kurdish list, he opposed the notion that the 
Christian ministerial nominee should come from that bloc, 
even if the position came from the Kurdish ministerial 
quota.  He told Poloff that he has not discussed his views 
with Kanna, since Kanna has refused to work with him since 
Sawa decided to run for the CoR on the Kurdish list. 
 
-------------------------- 
Iraqiyya's Dissatisfaction 
-------------------------- 
 
3.    (C) Iraqiyya List CoR member Safia Suhail told Poloff 
on May 14 that Ayad Allawi had asked her to pick which 
ministry she wanted from the ones allocated to Iraqiyya but 
she had rejected them all.  Suhail said she wanted nothing 
less than to be a PM Assistant in charge of service and 
other non-economic/security ministries.  She argued that a 
woman must have a seat among the senior political leaders 
in the Iraqi government.  She also said that Allawi will 
nominate Saad al-Janabi for the post of Communications 
Minister.  (Note:  In fact we understand Allawi has 
proposed his cousin Muhhamad Allawi.  End note.)  In a May 
14 conversation, negotiating committee member Shaikh 
Hussein al-Sha'alan claimed that Iraqiyya had unanimously 
refused what the Shia Coalition offered, which he listed as 
justice, human rights, communications, science and 
technology. (Note: Sha'alan made no mention of the highly 
sought-after trade ministry as part of the package.  End 
Note) Following the May 14 CoR session, Hussam al-Azzawi 
told PolFSN that Iraqiyya will continue to push for the 
ministry of defense and if they do not get any key 
ministries, they will consider withdrawing from the 
negotiations. 
 
--------------------- 
A SCIRI Point of View 
--------------------- 
 
4.    (C) In a May 14 conversation with PolOff, SCIRI 
politburo member and CoR member Ridha Jawad Taki said that 
a national unity government was necessary because it was 
the Marjaiya's will.  He said that efforts to put such a 
government together are complicated because the Sunni Arabs 
change their position regularly.  For example, Taki said, 
Tawafuq's leaders originally wanted the Ministries of 
Planning and Higher Education, but changed their minds and 
are now demanding the Ministries of Finance and Education. 
Negotiations will continue, Taki argued, but he said he 
feared that nobody will be fully satisfied with the 
ministries they get. 
 
---------------------- 
Fadhila Fixated on Oil 
---------------------- 
 
5.    (C) SCIRI politburo member Ridha Taki, May 14, told 
PolOff that Fadhila Party's withdrawal from cabinet 
formation talks is mere grandstanding.  He said the Fadhila 
Party is simply taking an extreme position to try to secure 
the Ministry of Oil.  (NOTE: Fadhila policy leader Hassan 
al-Shemmeri repeated to PolFSN May 14 that the party would 
 
BAGHDAD 00001613  002 OF 002 
 
 
return to the negotiating table if offered the oil 
ministry.)  However, Taki predicted that the ministry of 
oil will go to Shia Independent Hussein Shahristani.  Taki 
said Thamer Ghadban would be a better Minister of Oil, but 
said that it would be impossible to get all parties in the 
UIC 555 to agree to his nomination.  Shahristani, Taki 
stressed, is a better candidate than anyone in the Fadhila 
Party. 
 
6.    (C) Dagher Jasim of Sayed al-Shuhada, which is part of 
SCIRI, told PolOff on May 14 that no decision has been made 
about who in UIC 555 will control the various ministries. 
He said that first, it must be decided which ministries UIC 
555 will control, and then the parties in the Shia 
Coalition will negotiate which parties will get which 
ministries.  He predicted, however, that SCIRI will control 
the Ministries of Public Works and Finance, Hussein 
Shahristani will be Minister of Oil, Dawa Tanzim will get 
the Ministry of Education, and Tawafuq will get the 
Ministry of Higher Education. 
 
--------------------------------------------- ------- 
Dissatisfied Tawafuq Member Wants Government to Fail 
--------------------------------------------- ------- 
 
7.    (C) In a May 14 conversation with PolFSN, Tawafuq 
member Dhafir al-Ani accused the Shia Coalition of keeping 
Tawafuq away from revenue-producing ministries.  Al-Ani 
proposed that each minister have four deputy ministers 
representing the four major blocs.  He added that Tawafuq 
is so fragile that he is considering leaving the bloc to 
establish a large Sunni Arab bloc that will hinder 
government formation in the hopes that al-Maliki will fail 
and a new government can be formed. 
 
8. (C) COMMENT: The Iraqi individuals cited above are not 
the lead participants in government formation negotiations. 
Their comments, however, reflect the fluidity of the 
discussion on many key positions.  The comments also 
reflect pressures party leaders are under from rank and 
file party members with regard to inter and intra-bloc 
negotiations over distribution of ministerial positions. 
We can expect such partisan pressures to continue 
throughout the government formation process and thereafter 
as a new government of national unity moves forward to 
confront key policy challenges. 
KHALILZAD

 


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