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Iraq's Anticorruption Bill Amended To Include Graft, Nepotism

Iraq's Anticorruption Bill Amended To Include Graft And Nepotism

BAGHDAD (RFE/RL) -- An anticorruption bill recently submitted to the Iraqi parliament for approval has been amended to also combat graft and nepotism following Trade Minister Abdul Falah al-Sudani's resignation, RFE/RL's Radio Free Iraq (RFI) reports.

Al-Sudani resigned last week after an investigation revealed corruption of his office that also involved two of his brothers aggrandizing themselves with state monies.

Judge Abdul-Rahim al-Ugaily, the head of the anticorruption commission, told RFI on May 28 that the anticorruption bill drafted by the commission and currently debated in parliament meets UN anticorruption standards.

He added that it merits support from lawmakers as it addresses one of the most serious problems hindering Iraq's reconstruction and development.

Al-Ugaily said that 396 people -- including five senior officials -- have been convicted of dishonest acts since the commission was set up in 2004.

He underlined that the commission's work is of great importance to an ongoing campaign involving the security forces and the Prime Minister's Office in which 69 suspects have been arrested in May, including 33 detained on May 24 on arrest warrants issued against them by the judiciary.