Iraqis vote in first national election since ISIS defeated

Iraqis voted on Saturday for the first time since the defeat of Islamic State, with Prime Minister Haider Abadi, a rare ally of both the United States and Iran, trying to fend off powerful Shi’ite groups that would pull the country closer to Tehran.

Iraqis expressed pride at the prospect of voting for the fourth time since the fall of dictator Saddam Hussein, but also said they had scant hope that the election would stabilise a country beset by conflicts, economic hardship and corruption. (Reuters)

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<p>An Iraqi woman arrives to cast her vote at a polling station during the parliamentary election in the Sadr city district of Baghdad, Iraq, May 12, 2018. (Photo: Thaier al-Sudani/Reuters) </p>
Baghdad, Iraq

An Iraqi woman arrives to cast her vote at a polling station during the parliamentary election in the Sadr city district of Baghdad, Iraq, May 12, 2018. (Photo: Thaier al-Sudani/Reuters)

<p>Iraqis wait in a long line to cast their votes in the country’s parliamentary elections at a polling site in a damaged building in west Mosul, Iraq, Saturday, May 12, 2018. This is the first parliamentary election since the militant group was ousted from the city. (Photo: Maya Alleruzzo/AP) </p>
Mosul

Iraqis wait in a long line to cast their votes in the country’s parliamentary elections at a polling site in a damaged building in west Mosul, Iraq, Saturday, May 12, 2018. This is the first parliamentary election since the militant group was ousted from the city. (Photo: Maya Alleruzzo/AP)

<p>A female security member shows her ink-stained finger after casting her vote at a polling station two days before polls open to the public in a parliamentary election in Najaf,, Iraq May 10, 2018. (Photo: Alaa al-Marjani/Reuters) </p>
Najaf

A female security member shows her ink-stained finger after casting her vote at a polling station two days before polls open to the public in a parliamentary election in Najaf,, Iraq May 10, 2018. (Photo: Alaa al-Marjani/Reuters)

<p>An Iraqi Kurdish man dressed in traditional costume looks at the names on the electoral lists hung behind him before ticking his ballot behind a voting booth at a polling station in Arbil, the capital of the Kurdish autonomous region in northern Iraq, on May 12, 2018 as the country votes in the first parliamentary election since declaring victory over the Islamic State (IS) group. (Photo: Safin Hamed/AFP/Getty Images) </p>
Arbil

An Iraqi Kurdish man dressed in traditional costume looks at the names on the electoral lists hung behind him before ticking his ballot behind a voting booth at a polling station in Arbil, the capital of the Kurdish autonomous region in northern Iraq, on May 12, 2018 as the country votes in the first parliamentary election since declaring victory over the Islamic State (IS) group. (Photo: Safin Hamed/AFP/Getty Images)

<p>Iraq’s Independent High Electoral Commission employee closes a ballot box at a polling station during the parliamentary election in Baghdad, Iraq, May 12, 2018. (Photo: Abdullah Dhiaa al-Deen/Reuters) </p>
Baghdad

Iraq’s Independent High Electoral Commission employee closes a ballot box at a polling station during the parliamentary election in Baghdad, Iraq, May 12, 2018. (Photo: Abdullah Dhiaa al-Deen/Reuters)

<p>Voters head to polling stations to cast their vote for the Iraqi parliamentary election on May 12, 2018 in Erbil, Iraq. Citizens are voting in the first parliamentary elections since victory was declared over ISIS. (Photo: Younes Mohammed/Getty Images) </p>
Erbil

Voters head to polling stations to cast their vote for the Iraqi parliamentary election on May 12, 2018 in Erbil, Iraq. Citizens are voting in the first parliamentary elections since victory was declared over ISIS. (Photo: Younes Mohammed/Getty Images)

<p>An Iraqi voter casts her vote at a polling station in the city of Mosul on May 12, 2018, still partially in ruins from the devastating months-long fight to oust the Islamic State (IS) group. (Photo: Ahmad Al-Rubaye/AFP/Getty Images) </p>
Mosul

An Iraqi voter casts her vote at a polling station in the city of Mosul on May 12, 2018, still partially in ruins from the devastating months-long fight to oust the Islamic State (IS) group. (Photo: Ahmad Al-Rubaye/AFP/Getty Images)

<p>Voters head to polling stations to cast their vote for the Iraqi parliamentary election on May 12, 2018 in Erbil, Iraq. (Photo: Younes Mohammed/Getty Images) </p>
Erbil

Voters head to polling stations to cast their vote for the Iraqi parliamentary election on May 12, 2018 in Erbil, Iraq. (Photo: Younes Mohammed/Getty Images)

<p>Voters head to polling stations to cast their vote for the Iraqi parliamentary election on May 12, 2018 in Erbil, Iraq. Citizens are voting in the first parliamentary elections since victory was declared over ISIS. (Photo: Younes Mohammed/Getty Images) </p>
Erbil

Voters head to polling stations to cast their vote for the Iraqi parliamentary election on May 12, 2018 in Erbil, Iraq. Citizens are voting in the first parliamentary elections since victory was declared over ISIS. (Photo: Younes Mohammed/Getty Images)

<p>A woman waits outside a heavily-damaged building near a polling site in west Mosul, Iraq, Saturday, May 12, 2018. (Photo: Maya Alleruzzo/AP) </p>
Mosul

A woman waits outside a heavily-damaged building near a polling site in west Mosul, Iraq, Saturday, May 12, 2018. (Photo: Maya Alleruzzo/AP)

<p>Voters head to polling stations to cast their vote for the Iraqi parliamentary election on May 12, 2018 in Erbil, Iraq. (Photo: Younes Mohammed/Getty Images) </p>
Erbil

Voters head to polling stations to cast their vote for the Iraqi parliamentary election on May 12, 2018 in Erbil, Iraq. (Photo: Younes Mohammed/Getty Images)

<p>An Iraqi man and a child wave the national flag in the central holy city of Najaf on May 12, 2018 as the country votes in the first parliamentary election since declaring victory over the Islamic State (IS) group. (Photo: Haidar Hamdani/ AFP/Getty Images) </p>
Najaf

An Iraqi man and a child wave the national flag in the central holy city of Najaf on May 12, 2018 as the country votes in the first parliamentary election since declaring victory over the Islamic State (IS) group. (Photo: Haidar Hamdani/ AFP/Getty Images)

<p>An Iraqi woman casts her vote in the country’s parliamentary elections in Baghdad, Iraq, Saturday, May 12, 2018. (Photo: Khalid Mohammed/AP) </p>
Baghdad

An Iraqi woman casts her vote in the country’s parliamentary elections in Baghdad, Iraq, Saturday, May 12, 2018. (Photo: Khalid Mohammed/AP)

<p>An Iraqi security member dips his finger in ink after casting his vote at a polling station, two days before polls open to the public in a parliamentary election in Kirkuk, Iraq, May 10, 2018. (Photo: Ako Rasheed/Reuters) </p>
Kirkuk

An Iraqi security member dips his finger in ink after casting his vote at a polling station, two days before polls open to the public in a parliamentary election in Kirkuk, Iraq, May 10, 2018. (Photo: Ako Rasheed/Reuters)

<p>Employees of Iraqi Independent High Electoral Commission inspect voting materials at a warehouse in Basra, Iraq May 3, 2018. (Photo: Essam al-Sudani/Reuters) </p>
Basra

Employees of Iraqi Independent High Electoral Commission inspect voting materials at a warehouse in Basra, Iraq May 3, 2018. (Photo: Essam al-Sudani/Reuters)

<p>Elements of the Iraqi army and police stand guard at a warehouse of Iraqi’s Independent High Electoral Commission in Basra, Iraq May 3, 2018. (Photo: Essam al-Sudani/Reuters) </p>
Basra

Elements of the Iraqi army and police stand guard at a warehouse of Iraqi’s Independent High Electoral Commission in Basra, Iraq May 3, 2018. (Photo: Essam al-Sudani/Reuters)

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