Supporters of Iraqi radical Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr hold up his picture at a march in Baghdad
Supporters of Iraqi radical Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr hold up his picture at a march in Baghdad in April to mark the eighth anniversary of the fall of Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein. Sadr sais he was giving the Iraqi government a "last chance" to implement reforms, or popular demonstrations would be called. © Ahmad al-Rubaye - AFP/File
Supporters of Iraqi radical Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr hold up his picture at a march in Baghdad
AFP
Last updated: September 6, 2011

Sadr gives Iraq government last chance for reform

Radical anti-US Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr said on Monday he is giving the Iraqi government a "last chance" to implement reforms, or popular demonstrations would be called.

"This is the last chance before setting a date for open, peaceful, popular, demonstrations," Sadr said in a statement released by his office in the holy city of Najaf, without specifying how much time he was giving the government.

Sadr called on the government to give all Iraqis a share of the country's oil wealth, create jobs for 50,000 unemployed people nationwide, and provide free fuel for private generators, until Iraq's destitute electricity sector is improved.

"If these demands are achieved without delay... the open demonstration will be postponed indefinitely," Sadr said.

The cleric in February gave the government six months to improve services, threatening to call protests otherwise.

Sadr's bloc holds six cabinet posts and has 40 seats in parliament.

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