Sunni coalition calls for postponing Iraq elections
A major Sunni coalition on Wednesday called for postponing this year's local and parliamentary elections in Iraq.
In a statement, the Unity Alliance of Iraq said it had requested the Iraqi parliament to postpone the polls scheduled for May 12.
The statement, however, did not cite any reason for seeking to delay the vote.
Some Iraqi figures have called for postponing the polls, citing that the vote cannot be held while thousands of people have been displaced from their areas over the fight against Daesh terrorist group.
Iraqi forces have recently managed to dislodge Daesh from the country's north and south.
Electoral coalitions in the country are often formed based on sectarian and ethnic lines.
Notably, this year's election will see current Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi and former premier Nouri al-Maliki leading two separate electoral coalitions though they are members of the same political party, Dawa.
In Sunni areas in northern and western Iraq, an electoral coalition led by Vice President Eyad Allawi and Parliament Speaker Salim al-Jabouri will vie against an alliance headed by former Vice President Usama al-Nujaifi.
And in the semi-autonomous northern Kurdish region, the Kurdistan Democratic Party and Patriotic Union of Kurdistan will compete with other opposition parties, including Movement for Change known as Gorran.