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Moqtada Sadr

Cleric eyes government as election upset rocks Iraq

BAGHDAD: Populist Shia cleric Moqtada Sadr on Tuesday eyed a broad coalition after appearing to deal a blow to both Iranian and American influence with a shock election triumph that has upended Iraqi politics. Counting was still ongoing three days after the first parliamentary poll since the defeat of the Islamic State group, but the fiery Shia preacher's grouping was in the lead with 16 of 18 provinces tallied. Victory for the veteran nationalist's Marching Towards Reform alliance with Iraq's communists -- pitched an…

Iraq cleric Moqtada Sadr urges Assad to step down

NAJAF: Influential Iraqi cleric Moqtada Sadr on Saturday called on Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to step down, also calling on Washington and Moscow to stop intervening in the conflict. The young Najaf-based Shiite cleric condemned the killing of 87 people, including 31 children, in a suspected chemical attack last week in a rebel-held Syrian town that has been widely blamed on Damascus. "I would consider it fair for President Bashar al-Assad to resign and leave power, allowing the dear people of Syria to avoid the…