Iraqi President assigns al-Maliki the task of government formation
Iraqi President Jalal al-Talabani on Thursday officially assigned Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki the task of forming a new government, Iraqi news agencies reported.
Al-Maliki, head of the Shi'ite National Alliance, has 30 days to form a government comprised of groups which spent eight months reaching an agreement on how to allocate the country's leadership positions, DPA reported.
Earlier this month, Iraq's parliament voted to re-elect Talabani, who then appointed al-Maliki as premier for a second term, ending a stalemate that had dragged on since the March 7 parliamentary vote.
Former premier Iyad Allawi's Iraqiya List grouping, which won the largest number of seats in the house but failed to achieve a majority, was given the position of speaker of the house. The post went to Osama al-Nujaifi.
Allawi himself was made president of a national council for strategy.