NewsSpecial WireSpecial Report: Iran meddling in Iraq elections, al-Anbar -...

Special Report: Iran meddling in Iraq elections, al-Anbar – 1

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Iran Focus: Baghdad, Dec. 16 – Iran was accused on Friday of tampering with election ballots in Thursday’s parliamentary elections in neighbouring Iraq and attempting to influence voters to cast their ballots in favour of a Shiite slate with which it is allied, Iran Focus has learnt.
Iran Focus

Baghdad, Dec. 16 – Iran was accused on Friday of tampering with election ballots in Thursday’s parliamentary elections in neighbouring Iraq and attempting to influence voters to cast their ballots in favour of a Shiite slate with which it is allied, Iran Focus has learnt.

A security official in the western city of Ramadi told Iran Focus that on Wednesday three agents working for Tehran had been arrested on charges of attempting to meddle with local election ballots.

Ramadi is the capital city of the mainly Sunni al-Anbar province.

Iran has been actively helping the United Iraqi Alliance (UIA), led by its long-time ally, Abdul-Aziz al-Hakim, the Shiite cleric who heads the Supreme Council for Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SCIRI). Based in Iran for two decades before the United States-led war that toppled Saddam Hussein’s regime in 2003, al-Hakim led the Badr Brigade, the military wing of SCIRI, in a violent cross border struggle against Iraqi forces.

UIA, which also includes the Dawa Party, was assigned the ballot number 555.

Al-Hakim’s close Iranian ties and growing influence in Iraq has led many to fear that Iraq was heading toward closer ties with Iran, and, possibly, the establishment of a government based on Iran’s theocratic model.

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