Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

Media reactions to Boris Nemtsov's murder

Read more

DEBATE

The Murder of Boris Nemtsov: Who Killed Charismatic Opposition Figure? (part two)

Read more

DEBATE

The Murder of Boris Nemtsov: Who Killed Charismatic Opposition Figure?

Read more

TALKING EUROPE

Dealing with returning jihadists: Is de-radicalisation possible?

Read more

ENCORE!

Noel Gallagher, Bryce Dessner and ‘David Bowie is’ in Paris

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

'Agent Storm': How a militant Islamist became a CIA spy

Read more

FOCUS

China: New reform set to benefit migrants

Read more

THE OBSERVERS

Caged children in Syria and dumpster diving in Ivory Coast

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

French local elections: April 21st all over again?

Read more

An in-depth report by our senior reporters and team of correspondents from around the world. Every Saturday at 8.40 pm Paris time.

REPORTERS

REPORTERS

Latest update : 2010-03-15

Voting for a fresh start in Iraq

On March 7th, Iraqis went to the polls in the second general election since the fall of Saddam Hussein. A turning point towards peace? Our special correspondents Robert Parsons and Willy Bracciano were in Baghdad to follow this crucial election.

After decades of dictatorship, war, bombardment, invasion and sectarian strife, a chance at last for Iraq to turn a page on the past and look to a future of peace, tolerance and democratic governance. That, at least, is how the optimists presented last weekend's parliamentary elections.

Iraqis - ordinary voters and insurgents alike - appear to have agreed - at least in part - but to have drawn very different conclusions.

The remnants of al-Qaeda in Iraq, sensing that the tide is turning against them, vowed to drown the election in a sea of blood.
And true to their word, on election day they unleashed a barrage of bombs and suicide attacks on Baghdad.

But the story on 7th March was not the bombs or the tragic death of another 38 people but the 62 per cent of the electorate who defied the bombers to vote. They went to the ballot boxes with their friends and families - some carrying their children or pushing prams.

We take a look back at a week in which the Iraqi people took a big step towards seizing control of their own destiny.

By Robert PARSONS , Willy BRACCIANO

COMMENT(S)

Archives

2015-02-25 Pakistan

Pakistani Taliban set their sights on police

The Pakistani Taliban are targeting police in Karachi. Over 140 officers were killed last year, most of them victims of targeted assassinations.

Read more

2015-02-20 West Bank

Building in the West Bank

In the West Bank, Jewish settlements continue to expand. Some are authorised by the Israeli government, some not, but all are considered illegal by the international community...

Read more

2015-02-12 Tunisia

Tunisians flock to join the jihad

As Tunisia moves slowly forward on the path to democracy, the country is proportionally one of the biggest exporters of jihadist fighters. Over the past three years thousands of...

Read more

2015-02-05 India

India: the myth of 'Love Jihad'

In India, where religious tensions and violence are on the rise, Hindu extremists are accusing Muslims of practising “Love Jihad”. India’s Muslims deny these accusations and...

Read more

2015-01-16 Charlie Hebdo

Paris attacks: Who were the terrorists?

For three days, they spread fear and horror across France, killing 17 people before being shot dead by police. Their rampage began with an attack on satirical weekly Charlie...

Read more