Iraq judicial council rejects calls for top judge to retire

AP News
Posted: Aug 17, 2015 11:05 AM

BAGHDAD (AP) — Iraq's judicial council has rejected calls for judge Medhat al-Mahmoud, head of Supreme Judicial Council, to retire amid calls for widespread government reform.

Abdul-Sattar Bayrkdar, spokesman for the federal judiciary, said in a statement that a vote was held to determine whether al-Mahmoud should submit his resignation and the members unanimously decided to reject those calls.

"The public interest and justice at this stage require him to stay in his duties as president of the supreme judicial council and the supreme federal court," the statement reads.

The federal government has launched a far-reaching reform plan, backed by the highest Shiite religious authority, to target corruption and trim government spending.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.

Iraq's parliament has approved a report implicating senior officials over the fall of Mosul to the Islamic State group last year.

Speaker Salim al-Jabouri told reporters Monday the report, prepared by parliament's security and defense committee, will be sent to Iraq's prosecutor general. Al-Jabouri added that "no one is above the law" and that those responsible will be punished.

He didn't name the officials, but a lawmaker told The Associated Press on Sunday that the report implicates former Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, who held the post for eight years before he was pushed out last August, nearly two months after the fall of Mosul and about a third of the country to the extremists.

The lawmaker declined to be identified as he is not authorized to brief journalists.