محاصصة, Arabic for “apportionment” or “quotas”. A system of political power-sharing in Iraq, introduced in 2005 during the United States’ occupation to ensure a fair allocation of governing powers for each of the country’s main ethno-confessional groups. The Prime Minister’s role is reserved for a Shi’a, the Presidency for Kurds, and the Speaker of Parliament must be Sunni. The model’s success in easing Iraq’s sectarian tensions has been put into question, with critics viewing muhasasa as a means of institutionalising corruption and stalling progress.

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