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Iraq election head wants national vote on Jan. 21

BAGHDAD (AP) - The head of Iraq's electoral commission is proposing national elections be held on Jan. 21, five days after the scheduled date.

Parliament cleared the way for the vote when it passed a crucial election law Sunday. Lawmakers had been debating the legislation for weeks, but were deadlocked over how to apportion votes in the oil-rich city of Kirkuk.

Electoral commission chief Faraj al-Haidari told The Associated Press Monday he had sent the proposed date to the presidency council for approval.

The elections had been slated for Jan. 16 and there were concerns a significant delay might slow the U.S. troop withdrawal from Iraq. U.S. Ambassador to Iraq Christopher Hill said Sunday the troop drawdown was on schedule now that the law was in place.


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