Ibrahim al-Ja'fari (file photo)
22 February 2005 -- The Shi'a alliance that won the parliamentary elections in Iraq has nominated Ibrahim al-Ja'fari for prime minister.
Leaders of the United Iraqi Alliance said al-Ja'fari (see Profile:Ibrahim al-Ja'fari
) was chosen today after his challenger from inside the alliance, Ahmad Chalabi, withdrew his candidacy.
Al-Ja'fari said at a news conference that if he becomes prime minister, he will work to improve the capability of security forces and increase their numbers.
Al-Ja'fari, head of the Islamic Al-Da'wah Party and interim vice president, still faces a challenge from interim Prime Minister Iyad Allawi.
But Allawi's political group won only 14 percent of the vote in last month's election for the 275-member National Assembly. The United Iraqi Alliance won the most seats and has insisted it must have the prime minister's job.
A two-thirds majority is required in the National Assembly to confirm the new prime minister and his cabinet.
(Reuters/AP/AFP)For the latest news and analysis on Iraq, see RFE/RL's webpage on "The New Iraq".For news, background, and analysis on Iraq's historic 30 January elections, see RFE/RL's webpage "Iraq Votes 2005".