Update: Confusion in Baghdad
The Electoral Commission published today the names of the officially sanctioned candidates sans those barred by the Accountability and Justice Commission (AJC). This led to rumors that the Appeals Committee of the AJC has finalized its process of looking into the appeals from the barred candidates. What I understood is that those barred candidates cannot campaign at the present until such a time as they are allowed to run by the Appeals Committee. Thus, today’s list isn’t final, and the decision making process has been delayed. It should be noted that the list numbers of the barred candidates (those who haven’t been officially replaced by their coalitions) is still in effect, therefore the published lists today are not serialized but rather skip a few numbers where appropriate.
So, it’s still not over.
Update on Saleh al-Mutlag: I had argued that there is no legal statute barring Mutlag from running on the grounds that he propagates for the Ba’ath Party. However, I was alerted to Article 4/1 of the AJC Law that stipulates that the law applies to the relevant constitutional articles dealing with the Ba’ath Party, including Article 7/1 of the Iraqi Constitution. Seems like a stretch, but that is how the Appeals Committee is empowered to possibly punish Mutlag for mouthing off.
Furthermore, Mutlag is being associated with terrorist acts according to recent detainee confessions. Specifically he is being tied to Abu Jalal al-Fallouji (real name Hameed al-Jumeili), identified by the AJC as head of the Salahuddin Brigades, and Muhammad Hussein Ali al-Talabani. Talabani planned the attack on former Vice President Salam al-Zoba’i. Mutlag is accused, according to these confessors, of bankrolling these two individuals. However, what I know is that the Salahuddin Brigades (operationally part of the Islamic Army of Iraq) are effectively managed by former mukhaberat section chief Mahmoud Aziz al-Falahi (Abu Ali), who I have discussed here at Talisman Gate in the past.
Personally, I don’t like what Mutlag stands for, but I don’t buy these terrorist charges.