Iraq gears up for bitter, bloody election battle

By Loveday Morris, April 28, 2014

BAGHDAD — His campaign poster, jostling among the thousands that line the streets of the capital, has a message of unity: “Together we build Iraq.”

But as the country prepares for its first elections since the withdrawal of U.S. troops, Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki’s political rivals accuse him of the opposite: stoking sectarian divisions and dismantling its hard-won democracy.

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