Adil Abdul-Mahdi

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Adil Abdul-Mahdi
عادل عبد المهدي
Adil Abdul-Mahdi portrait.jpg
49th Prime Minister of Iraq
Assumed office
25 October 2018
PresidentBarham Salih
DeputyThamir Ghadhban
Fuad Hussein
Preceded byHaider al-Abadi
Minister of Oil
In office
8 September 2014 – 19 July 2016
Prime MinisterHaider al-Abadi
Preceded byAbdul Karim Luaibi
Succeeded byJabbar Alluaibi
Vice President of Iraq
In office
7 April 2005 – 11 July 2011
PresidentJalal Talabani
Preceded byRowsch Shaways
Succeeded byTariq al-Hashimi
Minister of Finance
In office
2 June 2004 – 6 April 2005
Prime MinisterAyad Allawi
Preceded byKamel al-Kilani
Succeeded byAli Allawi
Personal details
Born
Adil Abdul-Mahdi al-Muntafiki

(1942-01-01) 1 January 1942 (age 77)
Baghdad, Iraq
Political partyIndependent (since 2017)[1]
SIIC (1982–2017)[2]
Iraqi Communist (1970s)[3]
Spouse(s)Rajah
Alma materUniversity of Baghdad (BA)
University of Poitiers (MA, PhD)

Adil Abdul-Mahdi al-Muntafiki (Arabic: عادل عبد المهدي المنتفكي‎, born 1 January 1942) is an Iraqi politician, serving as Prime Minister of Iraq from October 2018 to December 2019, where he had announced his resignation amidst massive protests. Abdul-Mahdi is an economist and was one of the vice presidents of Iraq from 2005 to 2011. He formerly served as finance minister in the Interim government and Oil Minister from 2014 to 2016.[4]

Abdul-Mahdi is a former member of the powerful Shi'a party the Supreme Islamic Iraqi Council, or SIIC.[1] Long based in neighboring Iran, the group opposed a United States administration while holding close ties with the other, U.S.-backed, groups that opposed Saddam Hussein, including the Kurds and the Iraqi National Congress.

Background[edit]

Mahdi was born in Baghdad in 1942, the son of a Shiite cleric who was a minister in Iraq's monarchy. He attended high school at Baghdad College, an elite American Jesuit secondary school. After graduating, he attended Baghdad University, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in economics in 1963. He worked as a secretary for the Iraqi foreign ministry in 1965 and was an early supporter of the Iraqi Ba'ath Party, but left due to ideological disagreements. In 1969, he moved to France where he worked for French think tanks and edited magazines in French and Arabic. In 1972 he obtained another Master of Arts degree in political economy from the University of Poitiers. He later obtained a PhD in economics.[5]

Political career[edit]

In the 1970s, Abdul-Mahdi was a leading member of the Iraqi Communist Party.[6] The party split into two separate factions, the ICP-Central Committee, which was more accommodating of the military governments that had ruled Iraq since 1958, and the ICP-Central Leadership, which rejected all forms of cooperation of what it regarded as anti-progressive regimes, in 1967. Abdul-Mahdi joined the ICP-Central Leadership, and continued being active until it gradually disappeared by the early 1980s. By that time, Abdul-Mahdi adopted Iranian Islamic ideas, eventually merging with the Islamists when Ayatollah Khomeini eradicated the communists and other liberal opposition groups in Iran. Abdul-Mahdi continued his association with Iran and gradually amalgamated his group within the ICP-Central Leadership with the Iranians, rejecting his Marxist past and devoting all his group's time to propagating Khomeini's ideas in France, where he lived at the time. He eventually was made a member of the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq, an exiled opposition party and militia that was formed by Iran in Tehran in 1982 but composed exclusively of Iraqi exiles.[7]

In 2006, Abdul-Mahdi, outgoing Vice President in the transitional government, unsuccessfully ran for the United Iraqi Alliance's nomination for Prime Minister against incumbent Ibrahim al-Jaafari. He lost by one vote. He was reportedly considered to be a possibility for Prime Minister once again until Nouri al-Maliki became the UIA nominee. Subsequently, Abdul-Mahdi was re-elected as Vice President of Iraq. He exerted his limited authority in that role by delaying the first meeting of the National Assembly in March. He resigned from his position as vice-president on 31 May 2011.[8]

In December 2006, the Associated Press reported that Abdul-Mahdi could be the next Prime Minister of Iraq if a new multi-sectarian coalition succeeded in toppling the government of Nouri al-Maliki.[9]

On 26 February 2007, he survived an assassination attempt that killed ten people. He had been targeted two times prior.[10]

In 2009, his bodyguards were the perpetrators of a bloody bank robbery in Baghdad.[11]

In July 2013, Abdul-Mahdi announced his decision to give up his retirement pensions as a former vice president.[12]

On 2 October 2018, Iraqi president Barham Salih selected Abdul-Mahdi to be the Prime Minister of Iraq. Mahdi had 30 days to form a new government.[1] On 25 October 2018, Abdul Mahdi was sworn into office, five months after the 2018 elections.[13]

In April 2019, Abdul-Mahdi met with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin. He announced a $14 billion plan to upgrade Iraq's electricity infrastructure, with likely cooperation with German company Siemens. Merkel also pledged to strengthen economic and security cooperation between the two countries, and to continue German support for reconstruction efforts in Iraq.[14]

Resignation[edit]

On 29 November, after weeks of violent protests, Mahdi announced that he would resign his post.[15][16] The Iraqi parliament approved his resignation on 1 December 2019. However, he will continue on in a caretaker role until parliament approves a full-time replacement.[17][18]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Salaheddin, Sinah (3 October 2018). "Iraq tasks Shiite independent with forming new government". Associated Press. Archived from the original on 4 October 2018. Retrieved 16 October 2018.
  2. ^ "عادل عبد المهدي". Al Jazeera.
  3. ^ Doug Struck (14 February 2015). "Prospective Iraqi Premier a Man of Many Labels". Washington Post. Retrieved 3 October 2018.
  4. ^ "Iraqi prime minister accepts another minister's resignation". Press TV.
  5. ^ Adil Adbul Mahdi Iraq’s New Prime Minister.
  6. ^ "Abdul-Mahdi: The man tasked with forming Iraq's new government". Rudaw. 3 October 2018. Retrieved 4 October 2018.
  7. ^ Ismail, Tariq (2008). The Rise and Fall of the Communist Party of Iraq. Cambridge University Press. p. 239. ISBN 978-0-521-87394-9.
  8. ^ [1]
  9. ^ Hamza Hendawi; Qassim Abdul Zahra (10 December 2006). "Talks Under Way to Replace Iraq PM". The Washington Post. Baghdad. AP. Retrieved 27 December 2012.
  10. ^ Sly, Liz (27 February 2007). "VP survives assassination try in Iraq". Chicago Tribune. Baghdad. Retrieved 27 December 2012.
  11. ^ Rod Nordland; Riyadh Mohammed (2 September 2009). "In Bank Killings, Highs and Lows of Iraq Justice". The New York Times. Retrieved 4 October 2018.
  12. ^ Hussein, Ahmed (30 July 2013). "Adil Abdul Mahdi gives up his pensions". Iraqi News. Retrieved 3 October 2018.
  13. ^ "Prime Minister Abdul-Mahdi sworn in with 14 ministers, so far". Rudaw.
  14. ^ Şimşek, Ayhan (30 April 2019). "Merkel: Germany supports territorial integrity of Iraq". Anadolu Agency. Retrieved 5 May 2019.
  15. ^ Iraqi PM says he will resign after weeks of violent protests - Guardian(29 November 2019)
  16. ^ Iraq unrest: PM Abdul Mahdi to resign after bloodiest day in protests - BBC(29 December 2019)
  17. ^ Ibrahim, Arwa (1 December 2019). "Uncertainty remains as Iraq parliament accepts PM's resignation". Al Jazeera. Retrieved 1 December 2019.
  18. ^ Gathright, Jenny (1 December 2019). "Iraqi Parliament Accepts PM Adel Abdul-Mahdi Resignation, But Protesters Demand More". NPR.

External links[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by
Coalition Provisional Authority
Finance Minister of Iraq
2004–2005
Succeeded by
Ali Allawi
Preceded by
Ibrahim Jaafari and Rowsch Shaways
Interim
Vice President of Iraq
Served alongside Ghazi al-Yawer, Tariq al-Hashimi and Khodair al-Khozaei

2005–2011
Succeeded by
Tariq al-Hashimi and Khodair al-Khozaei
Preceded by
Abdul Karim Luaibi
Energy Minister of Iraq
2014–2016
Succeeded by
Jabbar al-Luaibi
Preceded by
Haider al-Abadi
Prime Minister of Iraq
2018–present
Succeeded by
Incumbent