Without Muqtada al Sadr, Iraq's kingmaker, no coalition government can be formed, experts say. And if it is formed, Sunni bloc’s Halbousi and Kurdish leader Barzani are likely to be in the new government.
Iran-backed groups have lost significant ground in Iraq but Tehran still has some supporters to help it keep its influence over the neighbouring country.
At least 13 policemen killed in attack on a checkpoint near Kirkuk city, officials say.
Iraq Turkmen Front leader, Ershad Salihi, says the PKK is using drug trafficking across the country to support its terrorist activities.
The K1 Air Base is the third site coalition forces have left this month in line with US plans to consolidate its troops in two locations in Iraq.
Police and medics say Iraqi forces shot dead three anti-government protesters, adding to the hundreds killed in weeks of unrest, as a rights group warned a deadly crackdown could spiral into a "bloodbath."
Meanwhile, Daesh set fire to farmland overnight in a village in Iraq’s Kirkuk province killing one person and wounding seven others, police said on Thursday.
Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan says Ankara and Baghdad discussed a possible deal to increase military and security cooperation, after meeting with visiting Iraqi PM Adil Abdul Mahdi in Ankara.
Iraqi authorities in the northern oil-rich province of Kirkuk have begun recounting votes from a parliamentary election in May that was marred by allegations of fraud, Reuters reports.
Tensions are high in Kirkuk, where the results of a parliamentary election in May are being disputed by the Turkmen and Arab communities after a Kurdish party appeared to have won.
According to intelligence services, tests of electronic voting machines -- used for the first time in Iraqi elections – produced varied results, appearing to give credence to the fraud claims.
KDP, the most powerful party of the KRG, slightly increased its seats in the Iraqi parliament despite the diplomatic and military failure after leading a non-binding independence referendum last year in September.
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