After two months of violent unrest that have left more than 420 people dead and thousands mourning them in nationwide marches, Iraq’s parliament has reportedly approved the resignation of the embattled cabinet .
Prime Minister Adel Abdel Mahdi said in a report by AFP, he would submit his resignation to parliament following a spike in the death toll among protesters who accuse the entire ruling elite of being inept, corrupt and beholden to foreign powers.
The demonstrations spread from their epicentre in Baghdad and the mostly Shiite south to the northern, majority-Sunni city of Mosul, where hundreds of students dressed in black organised a mourning march for fallen activists.
Parliament opened its session on Sunday afternoon and within minutes had approved Abdel Mahdi’s resignation, which according to the constitution renders him and the entire cabinet a “caretaker government.”
The speaker of parliament said he would now ask President Barham Saleh to name a new prime minister.
Just before the session began, another protester was shot dead in the capital, medical sources said.
The protest movement is Iraq’s biggest since the US-led invasion of 2003 toppled Saddam Hussein and installed a democratic system in the oil-rich but poverty-plagued nation.