BAGHDAD: Hundreds of protesters on Sunday took to the streets in some parts of Iraq, condemning the results of recent parliamentary elections in which some groups suffered significant losses, witnesses said.
Preliminary results of the October 10 polls showed that a bloc led by Iraq's influential cleric Moqtada al Sadr won 73 seats so remains the largest group in the 329-strong parliament. However, the Fatah bloc won only 15 seats, a major decline from the 47 seats it held in the previous parliament. An alliance of nine groups have rejected the results, claiming the election was marred by "major irregularities." On Sunday, supporters of those groups rallied in the capital Baghdad and the southern province of Basra and set tyres on fire in protest against the results, witnesses added. Protesters meanwhile cut off a road linking Baghdad with Basra. The election, held months ahead of schedule, came amid widespread frustration with Iraq's political elite.