Iraqi parliament to vote on state of emergency

Photo: Iraqi parliament to vote on state of emergency / Arab World

Iraq's parliament is expected to hold an emergency session to vote on declaring a state of emergency after Islamic militants seized key cities in the country's Sunni heartland, AP reported.

Lawmakers were to convene at noon on Thursday to consider a request by embattled Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, who has asked them to declare the state of emergency following the push by fighters from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant into Sunni-dominated cities north of Baghdad.

Yes-votes from two-thirds of the 325-member parliament are required to approve a state of emergency, which grants the prime minister wider powers in running the country. Legal experts say those could include powers to impose curfews, restrict public movements and censor the media.

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