The son of Iraq’s defense minister during the Saddam Hussein regime won a seat in parliament in this weekend’s early elections, according to initial results.
Khaled Sultan, the son of former Defense Minister Sultan Hashim, was elected a member of parliament in the northern Nineveh province with 4,017 votes, the results showed.
Khaled Sultan is the first son of any Saddam-era officials to become a member of parliament since 2003, when a US-led invasion removed the Saddam Hussein regime from power.
Sultan Hashim was a key figure in the former Iraqi regime. He had headed the Iraqi delegation during cease-fire negotiations with the US-led coalition forces in 1991 after the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait in 1990.
Following the US invasion to Iraq, he surrendered to US forces in 2003.
Sultan Hashim died on July 20, 2020 of a heart attack in a prison in Iraq.
According to initial results announced late on Monday, Shia cleric Muqtada al-Sadr’s party won 73 seats, the highest, followed by Taqaddoum (progress) bloc of Parliament Speaker Mohamed al-Halbousi with 38 seats. The State of Law bloc led by former Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki came third with 37 seats.
The polls were originally scheduled for 2022, but political parties decided to hold early elections following mass protests that erupted in 2019 against deep-seated corruption and poor governance.
The vote was the fifth in Iraq since 2003 when a US-led invasion overthrew the regime of former President Saddam Hussein.
Writing by Ahmed Asmar in Ankara