The Latest: Iraqi parliament approves manual ballot recount
BAGHDAD (AP) — The Latest on developments in Iraq (all times local):
An Iraqi lawmaker says parliament has voted in favor of a manual ballot recount after widespread fraud in the country’s recent parliamentary elections.
Mohammed Saadon says lawmakers voted on the measure Wednesday. He says it’s unclear when the recount would start and that it will be up to the Supreme Judicial Council to decide on the timing.
There have been complaints of irregularities in the May 12 balloting in which an electronic voting system was used for the first time.
A manual recount of votes in some areas has been called for, a request that has been rejected by the election commission as illegal.
Iraq’s prime minister says a commission looking into alleged irregularities in last month’s national elections has found “dangerous violations,” a development that could prolong the process of forming a new government.
During his weekly press conference on Tuesday, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi said the commission found “widespread manipulation” and faulted election authorities for “not taking the needed measures or taking wrong ones.”
He says the Cabinet approved the recommendations of the commission, which includes the heads of five security and oversight agencies as well as the head of an anti-corruption agency. Those include a manual recount of at least 5 percent of ballots and annulling all votes from overseas and displaced voters.
Al-Abadi called for criminal investigations, and banned election officials from traveling abroad without his approval.