Judges Limit Iraq Vote Recount to ‘Suspect’ Ballots

Announcement will speed up manual recount

In a move that will greatly speed up Iraq’s ordered manual recount of all 11 million ballots cast during the May 12 election, the panel of judges in charge of the process say they aren’t going to actually count every ballot.

Instead of the ordered full, manual recount, the panel says they will only be looking at “suspect” ballots, which is to say only those which are the subject of any specific official reports or formal complaints about voter fraud.

Unlike some past elections, there hasn’t been a lot of transparency from the electoral commission on how many complaints there actually are. What we’ve heard of fraud allegations, however, appear to be mostly centered on just a few regions in the country.

The ongoing process of finalizing last month’s vote count and forming a government is essentially on hold until this recount wraps up. With the major politically factions now seemingly all behind cleric Moqtada al-Sadr’s winning bloc, it seems there is growing interest in wrapping up the complaints and getting everything finished.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.