The Obama administration has chosen to ignore Maliki’s assertions that he should still be prime minister.
Marie Harf, Spokeswoman of the US Department of State, stated that the administration “firmly rejects any efforts to achieve outcomes via coercion or manipulation,” a reference to Maliki who recently called off his loyalists who were moving to secure key infrastructure in Baghdad.
Harf said: “Prime minister-designate al-Abadi is moving forward as part of this process, and that’s what we’ll be focused on in the coming days,” before adding “We’ve seen these kinds of comments from the current prime minister before … [Iraq’s] own democratic, constitutionally outlined process has been ongoing, and that’s what happening right now.”
Other American officials, including the President and Vice President have supported the move and have asked prime minister-designate to form an inclusive government.
Meanwhile, deputy national security advisor Ben Rhodes stated: “The message to all of Iraq’s leaders is there is a peaceful process in place to get a new government.”
“That is the process that all Iraqis have to respect and frankly any efforts to derail that process, any efforts to use violence instead of working peacefully through the political process would be rejected not just by the United States, but by Iraqis themselves and the international community.”
Rhodes added that the Americans want a “peaceful context” in which the process of forming a new government in Iraq is conducted.
“Our message to prime minister Maliki and to all Iraqi leaders is that this is the one process that is consistent with the Iraqi constitution that is going to lead to a new government and he needs to respect that process and let it go forward, because frankly this is not being imposed on anybody from outside of Iraq, this is what the Iraqis themselves have decided to do.”
Former Prime Minister Maliki meanwhile has continued his attempt to cling on to power, saying the appointment of Abadi has “no value.” However, Maliki has lost support not only of those within his country, but his two biggest foreign supports, the United States and the Iranian regime, both of which now support Abadi’s bid for power.