Maliki's Allies Win Big in Provincial Vote

Maliki's party wins 38% of Baghdad vote, 37% in Basra
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Feb 5, 2009 9:51 AM CST
Followers of radical Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, seen on poster, attend Friday prayers in the Sadr City area of Baghdad on Jan. 30, 2009.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Allies of Iraq's prime minister finished first in races for ruling councils in Baghdad and eight other provinces, official results from last weekend's election show. Nouri al-Maliki's party won 38% of the vote in Baghdad, the election commission said. His party was followed by allies of anti-US cleric Muqtada al-Sadr and a Sunni party, with 9% each.

In Basra, the country's second-biggest city, the prime minister's followers won 37% of the vote. The Supreme Islamic Iraqi Council, the biggest Shiite party, won 11.6%. Voters chose ruling councils in 14 of the 18 provinces in the first election since December 2005.