Experts: Saudi Arabia has few pressure levers for next Iraqi Government

Experts: Saudi Arabia has few pressure levers for next Iraqi Government

Azerbaijan, Baku, April 16 / Trend U. Sadikhova /

Saudi Arabia is unlikely to play a leading role in forming the future of Iraqi government, despite the expansion of dialogue with different political parties, experts say.

"I don't think that Saudi Arabia has any leverage at all. At the moment the ideas are who ever forms the government in Iraq tries to reassure various neighbors including Saudi Arabic, so they don't make difficulties. But in terms of actually manipulating Iraqi politics the Saudi Arabia is non-starters," - Charles Tripp, Professor of the University of London, specializing in Middle East politics believes.

Iraqi President Jalal Talabani in an interview to Arabic television channel "Al-Arabiya" said that Saudi Arabia doesn't take any steps to intervene in forming the next Iraqi government. Talabani statements were voiced amid Vice President Tariq Al-Hashimi's visit to Riyadh, who is also nominated in the elections held March 7. As a result of voting, the two largest political blocs, headed by former Prime Minister Iyad Allawi and the current Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki got an equal number of seats in parliament. Allawi's Al Iraqiya Coalition won majority of votes. However, due to the fact that the party can not form a government alone, it is supposed that the next Iraqi leadership will be coalition.

The real competition in the held elections was actually between pro-Arab and pro-Iranian political forces, Ghassan Attiyah, the head of the Iraq foundation for development and democracy believes. "All the activities after the elections in Iraq should be considered in the context. The elections didn't determine any winner, so they have to form a coalition," - Attiyah told Trend. Iranians spent millions on these elections while Saudi Arabia and other Arab countries have actively supported Iyad Allawi - a secular Shiite, because the prime-minister should be Shiite.

Allawi, who headed Iraq's transitional Government in 2004, belongs to the secular coalition and criticizes Iran, which tries to exert pressure through the rest of the religious Shiite parties on forming a new Iraqi government.

According to Attiyah, Arab countries made efforts to unite the political forces in the country during the election period, exactly what the Iranians did in 2008. However, the main factor is the real competition between the pro-Arab and pro-Iranian supporters in Iraq, he believes. "In the elections one thing was surprising - how will they be united? Of course all those who will visit Iran or Saudi Arabia will say they are not interfere. But there is a real struggle between the two," Attiyah said.

None of runners in terms of possible prime-minister of government in Iraq, whether it is Nuri al-Maliki or Jafari or Sadr or Allawi want to present themselves as pro-Iranian, but obviously they can't ignore Iran, British analyst on Iraqi policy, Charles Tripp said.

"In many ways it is very important that Iraqi future government not to act like pro-Saudi Arabian or pro-Iranian, otherwise it will mean political suicide. But clearly they are trying to ensure that Iranians don't complicate the things as it was in the former government," the expert said.

Nouri al-Maliki heads Shiite party, Al-Daawa. Despite good relations with Washington, during his premiership he was perceived in the Arab world as a politician sympathizing with Iran's interests. Tensions increased after al-Maliki's accusations of the Syrian leadership of harboring former Baathists - members of Saddam Hussein's party and involvement in the organization of two large explosions in Baghdad which killed more than 100 people.

The diplomatic scandal was resolved after intervention of Turkey and the Arab League. But analysts believed that it undermined the credibility of the Arab world to al-Maliki.
Attiyah distinguishes the situation in Iraq before and after the withdrawal of U.S. troops. During the military campaign, the Bush administration did not want any foreign intervention, but leaving Iraq, Washington needs the assistance of its regional allies and promotes the role of Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and Syria, if it disengages from Iran.
"The current situation is similar to that in Lebanon, and at the same time it is different. If the government of Saad al-Hariri in Lebanon was formed after the reconciliation of Syria and Saudi Arabia, In Iraq all depends on the agreement between Iran and the Saudi Kingdom," Attiyah said.

However, the Lebanese example is unlikely to succeed in Iraq, because Iran has serious problems with the U.S. related to its nuclear program and support for Hezbollah. So, it does not worth waiting for a quick and easy resolution of political conflict in Iraq.
The position of Saudi Arabia is also weakened by distrust of the majority of Iraqis to the policy of Riyadh. So, Iran has more "cards" to influence Iraqi politics, Attiyah added speaking about who has more chances to win in this race
"Iran's position is more perspective and stronger than the Saudis, because it is involved in the situation in Iraq since 2003. I see no immediate opportunities for Saudi Arabia, Jordan or Egypt to improve the situation in Iraq, so the fight will take a long time", Attiyah said.

Subscribe to Trend in Google News! Subscribe
U.S. top security adviser, Yemen envoy head to Saudi, UAE
U.S. top security adviser, Yemen envoy head to Saudi, UAE
Goldman expects oil prices to hit $90 by year-end as supply tightens
Goldman expects oil prices to hit $90 by year-end as supply tightens
Oil gains for fifth day amid supply constraints
Oil gains for fifth day amid supply constraints
Loading Bars
Latest
Heydar Aliyev Center in Baku illuminated with colors of National Flag of Azerbaijan (PHOTO)
Chief of General Staff of Azerbaijani Armed Forces meets Turkish deputy minister (PHOTO)
There's opportunity to rebuild S.Caucasus, that's secure, prosperous - EU Special Rep
Long live brave brothers who reunited Karabakh with Azerbaijan – Turkish FM (PHOTO)
National flag of Azerbaijan illuminated on highest tower of Indonesia (VIDEO)
EBRD allocates funds to support infrastructure dev't at Almaty International Airport
Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry holds event in connection with Remembrance Day (PHOTO/VIDEO)
Iran denies IAEA to replace memory cards of cameras at its Karaj nuclear complex
Victory in Azerbaijan’s Karabakh region greatly changes world military strategy - Turkish expert
CITY College, University of York Europe Campus holds seminar on "Gamification: The Contemporary Way to Engage Employees and Customers" in Baku (PHOTO)
Turkish president pays respect to Azerbaijani martyrs on Remembrance Day (PHOTO)
Georgian E-Space reveals number of electric vehicles registered in country
Armenia needs to hand over all mine maps of Azerbaijan's liberated lands in its possession - PACE
Georgia jointly with France open modern livestock farm
Personnel of Defense Ministry and Internal Troops of MIA hold solemn march in Shusha (PHOTO)
Uzbek Bukhara oil refinery to buy oil demulsifier via tender
Turkish president calls Azerbaijani president on occasion of Remembrance Day
Azerbaijan unveils share of business loans in client portfolio for 8M2021
Kazakh, Saudi Arabian companies sign Memorandum of Cooperation
Azerbaijani Mine Clearance Agency reports on the results of its work
Sales of National Iranian Copper Industries Company soar
TBC Capital makes prediction for Georgia's tourism sector
Uzbekistan's external assets value down thanks to falling gold prices
New head of EU delegation to Azerbaijan commemorates martyrs of Second Karabakh War
Georgia carries out research for construction of solar power plants
Azerbaijan decreases volume of loans issued to transport and communications sector
U.S. top security adviser, Yemen envoy head to Saudi, UAE
Rosneft beats BP in capitalization on London Stock Exchange
Iran sells crude oil related securities under “Standard Parallel Salaf” contracts
Kazakhstan commissions thermal power plant in Arkalyk city after reconstruction
Azerbaijani Remembrance Day commemorated in Israel with kamancha performance
Azerbaijani PM sends letter to Turkey's VP regarding Remembrance Day
Memory of Azerbaijan's martyrs honored in country's Khachmaz district (PHOTO)
Volume of loans issued by commercial banks increases in Georgia
Georgia sees increase in total volume of non-bank deposits
Azerbaijan, EBRD determining rules for supporting small renewable energy systems
Iran begins to issue travel visas
Azerbaijan shares data on number of vaccinated citizens
Azerbaijanis turned 30-year old pain into joy - Turkish president's administration
Azerbaijan confirms 558 more COVID-19 cases, 1,241 recoveries
Expo 2020 Dubai: 15 Indian states, 9 federal ministries announce participation
Iran must change joint oil field management strategy - Vienna Energy Research Group
Azerbaijan appeals to int'l structures regarding Armenia's war crimes against civilians
Azerbaijani people continue to honor bright memory of their martyrs – CMO chairman
President Ilham Aliyev and First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva visit grave of national leader Heydar Aliyev at Alley of Honors (PHOTO)
Strong quake hits Greece's biggest island of Crete, one person killed
Kazakhstan sees increase in use of plastic cards
Kazakhstan's Tengizshevroil wraps up overhaul of equipment ahead of time
Weekly review of Georgia's capital markets
Blue hydrogen production to be developed in 4 European countries
Kazakhstan to launch plant for production of domestic COVID-19 vaccine
Turkey's deputy national defense minister on visit in Azerbaijan to pay respect to martyrs of Second Karabakh War (PHOTO)
Iran reveals COVID-19 data for September 27
TAP’s technical forward capacity for Sept.27-Oct.3
Azerbaijani Parliamentary delegation to attend 10th plenary session of TURKPA in Kazakhstan (PHOTO)
Physical gas flows, nominations at TAP’s interconnections
We are proud of our children and Victory of Azerbaijan - parents of martyrs (PHOTO)
Almost 804 thsd doses of coronavirus vaccine administered in Kyrgyzstan
Volume of ACG oil transshipment via Ceyhan terminal disclosed
Turkmen oil company opens tender for provision of insurance services
Georgia shares data on amount of premiums according to types of insurance
Another page written into glorious history of Azerbaijan - Turkish embassy
Uzbek company signs deal with Thyssenkrupp on construction of mining complex
Indian Army Officer sets new Guinness record for 'Fastest Solo Cycling' from Leh to Manali
Banking sector of Azerbaijan completes 8M2021 with profit - CBA
Azerbaijan, Turkey extend Shah Deniz 1 deal
Azerbaijan’s Shusha marks Remembrance Day by minute of silence (PHOTO)
Brazil to open Iran-Brazil Chamber of Commerce - ambassador
Karabakh should be associated with peace and development, not war - Turkish FM
Azerbaijan to hold meeting of FMs of Turkic Council member countries
Turkmenistan to commission new residential complexes by end of 2021
Mines - main obstacle for restoration work in Azerbaijan's liberated lands, FM says
Central Bank of Azerbaijan records increase in total liabilities of banks
Indian Navy Chief arrives in Oman on 3-day visit
Turkmenistan launches new gas pipeline in Mary region
Azerbaijani Defense Ministry visits Alley of Honor and Alley of Martyrs in Baku (PHOTO)
Iran records increase in electricity generation of Shahid Salimi TPP
EU Commission proposes extending vaccine export-control scheme
US Coast Guard conducts inspection at Kulevi Port
Georgia shares data on health insurance premiums
Azerbaijani banks' total assets slightly up
Iran unveils details for manufacturing of various vehicles
Streets of Baku decorated with Azerbaijani flags on Remembrance Day (PHOTO)
Azerbaijani Navy fires multiple rocket launchers on occasion of Remembrance Day
Mountain Jews in Azerbaijan's Guba commemorate martyrs
Achieving full electricity by 2030 requires around $40B a year
Kazakhstan’s Ekibastuz GRES-2 power station opens tender to buy kerosene
UK ambassador honors memory of Azerbaijanis who died in second Karabakh war
Business activity index increases in Uzbekistan
Russia to support Uzbekistan in WTO accession
Turkey not planning to meet with Armenian officials - FM
Georgia reports 663 new cases of coronavirus for Sept.27
President Ilham Aliyev, First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva join march to pay tribute to memory of Azerbaijani martyrs of second Karabakh war (PHOTO/VIDEO)
Iran reveals data on mining production
Kazakhstan considers resuming direct flights with Saudi Arabia
Israeli ambassador to Azerbaijan commemorates Karabakh War martyrs with minute of silence
Iran records increase in imports
Iran sees increase in exports – IRICA
Memory of Azerbaijani martyrs honored during meeting of Turkic-speaking states' FMs
EAM Jaishankar flies to Mexico after round of bilateral meetings on UNGA sidelines
All news