Iraqi Parliament Fails to Select New Leaders

b_250_0_16777215_00_images_obgrabber_2014-07_dc86626ef8.jpgiStock/Thinkstock (BAGHDAD) -- The Iraqi government made no progress Sunday in determining its next wave of political leaders, as a session of parliament was over just about as quickly as it began. Baghdad's failure to come to an agreement on picking a new speaker is indicative of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki's regime, as Iraq faces the threat of Islamic extremists bent on taking control of the entire country.

Following its April elections, the Iraqi parliament was supposed to have selected a speaker, president and, ultimately, a prime minister, who may or may not be Maliki, depending on how much support he has among lawmakers. However, the Shiite leader's continued marginalization of Sunnis and Kurds, along with his reluctance to establish a unity government, has plunged the country further into chaos, with the Islamic State enjoying success against Iraq's fragile military.

Meanwhile, another session of parliament is planned for Tuesday. Once lawmakers decide on a speaker, they have 30 days to pick a president. Following that, the leader of the majority party will then form a new government, whereupon the next prime minister will be chosen.

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