Fuad Masum, of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK, is seen at a press conference in on January 28, 2003
Fuad Masum, of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK, is seen at a press conference in on January 28, 2003 © Behrouz Mehri - AFP
Fuad Masum, of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK, is seen at a press conference in on January 28, 2003
AFP
Last updated: July 24, 2014

Iraq parliament elects Fuad Masum president

Iraq's parliament on Thursday elected veteran Kurdish politician Fuad Masum as federal president, a move that paves the way for the much-delayed formation of a new government.

He succeeds the ailing Jalal Talabani, who returned only five days ago from 18 months of medical treatment in Germany to serve out his tenure.

Parliament speaker Salim al-Juburi announced that Masum, who was born in 1938 and became the first prime minister of autonomous Iraqi Kurdistan more than two decades ago, had garnered the most votes.

Masum was almost guaranteed the job after Kurdish parties struck a late night deal to support him.

Under an unofficial power-sharing deal, Iraq's Kurds traditionally get the post of president.

Masum won 211 votes while his challenger only managed 17 in the second round, according to figures announced by Juburi.

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