Iraq election commission chief released from jail

By REUTERS
April 15, 2012 19:22

 
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BAGHDAD - Iraq's electoral commission chief and another member were released on bail on Sunday after spending three days in jail on corruption charges, in a case that has stirred political tensions in the country's fragile power-sharing government.

Faraj al-Haidari, head of Iraq's Independent High Electoral Commission (IHEC), and Karim al-Tamimi were arrested on Thursday on charges they had given illicit bonuses to some IHEC employees, charges they have denied.

The arrests came as Shi'ite Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki's critics worry he is seeking to tighten control over independent government bodies.

"An investigative judge ordered the release of both Faraj al-Haidari and Karim al-Tamimi on bail," said Abdul-Sattar al-Birqdar, a Supreme Judicial Council spokesman.

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