Having suffered major losses in Iraq’s Oct. 10 parliamentary polls, Shiite cleric and politician Ammar Al-Hakim is doing a U-turn in several respects. Having tirelessly campaigned against armed groups outside of the state’s control, Hakim’s Hikmah Movement is now effectively siding with the political wings of these same actors. The motives are manifold as tensions rise between Shiite factions close to Iran and their rivals in the Sadrist bloc.
First and foremost, the Hikmah Movement is likely seeking to maintain its influence in the next Iraqi government. In the previous 2018 parliamentary elections, the movement secured 19 seats. This year...
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