Iraq’s PM Nouri al-Maliki steps down


Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Maliki has stepped aside, ending political deadlock in Baghdad as the government struggles against insurgents. He resigned on state TV to make way for Haider al-Abadi, who was asked by Iraq’s president to form a government.

Mr Maliki had been under intense pressure to make way for Mr Abadi, a deputy speaker of parliament.An offensive led by Islamic State (IS) rebels in the north has triggered a security and humanitarian crisis.

IS, a Sunni Muslim jihadist group formerly known as Isis, seized a large band of territory across northern Iraq and Syria this summer.The resulting turmoil has driven an estimated 1.2 million Iraqis from their homes.


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