Draft Constitution Excerpts
The Baghdad-based daily "Al-Sabah" published what it identified as the 22 August text of the draft constitution on its website on 23 August. According to the published version, the 30-page draft includes the following clauses:
Article 1: The Republic of Iraq is an independent sovereign state; its system of government is a federal democratic representative (parliamentary) republic.
Section 1: Islam is the official religion of the country, and is a main source of legislation.
Clause a) No law must be adopted that would be contradictory to the confirmed tenets of Islam.
Section 2: This constitution guarantees the preservation of the Islamic identity of the majority of the Iraqi people as well as it guarantees to all individuals a full right to religion in terms of the freedom of religious belief and practice.
Article 3: Iraq is a country of many ethnicities, religions and denominations; it is a part of the Islamic world, and its Arab people is a part of the Arab nation.
Section 1: The Arabic language and the Kurdish language are the two official languages of Iraq. The right is guaranteed to Iraqis to receive for their children education in their mother tongues, such as Turkoman and Syriac, at government-run educational institutions in accordance with education curricula, or in any other language at private educational institutions.
Section 4: The Turkoman language and the Syriac language are official languages in the areas of their [native speakers'] residence.
Section 5: Every [federal] region or governorate can adopt any other language as an additional official language if the majority of its inhabitants decide on that in a general referendum.
Section 1:Any grouping or ideology is forbidden that incorporates racism, terror, hatred, and religious chauvinism, or one that incites, provides for, approves, and propagates such. [This concerns] especially the Saddamist Al-Ba'ath Party in Iraq, whatever name it bears. That is not allowed within the political pluralism in Iraq and will be further regulated by law.
Article 8: Iraq adheres to the principle of good neighborhood relationships and abides by noninterference in the internal affairs of other countries. It endeavors to solve conflicts through peaceful means, establishes its [foreign] relations on the grounds of joint interests and equal dealing, and respects its international obligations.
Clause B: It is prohibited to establish paramilitary militias outside the framework of the Armed Forces.
Clause c) The Iraqi Armed Forces and its employees, including soldiers employed at the Ministry of Defense and any agency or organization affiliated with it, are not permitted to run as candidates for elections to win political posts. Nor are they permitted to conduct electoral campaigns in favor of a candidate. Nor they are permitted to participate in any activity declared for prohibited in the regulations of the Ministry of Defense. This prohibition includes any activities of the aforementioned individuals that they perform in private or in service, without including their right to cast votes in elections.
Article 36: The state secures, insomuch as it does not break general order and morals.
Section 1: Freedom of expressing one's opinion, by all means.
Section 2: Freedom of journalism, printing, advertising, media, and publication.
Section 3: Freedom of assembly and peaceful demonstrations, as regulated by law.
Section 1: Freedom of establishing associations and political parties, and of the choice of membership in them, is guaranteed [by the constitution] and regulated by law.
Section 2: It is not permitted to force anyone to become a member of any party, association, and political fractions, nor to force anyone to continue the membership in it.
Article 43: The state takes care for strengthening the role of civil society institutions for their support, development, and independence, Insomuch as this is in harmony with a peaceful means for reaching their set goals and this is regulated by law.
Section 2: The state takes cares for reviving Iraqi tribal confederations and tribes, and is concerned with their affairs, insomuch as this is in harmony with religion, law, and noble human values, [and] insomuch as it contributes to developing the society, and prohibits the tribal customs that are in contradiction with human rights.
Article 103:A general board is [to be] established by a [special] law to guarantee the rights of [federal] regions and governorates non-allied in [federal] regions for the just participation in the administration of various federal institutions of the state, missions, student scholarships [abroad], delegations, regional and international conferences. These will consist of representatives of the federal government, [federal] regions, and non-allied governorates. This will be regulated by law.
Article 104: A general board is [to be] established by a [special] law to control and allocate the federal revenues. The board will consist of experts [delegated] by the federal government, [federal] regions, governorates, and their representatives, and will assume the following responsibilities:
Section 1: The implementation of just treatment in the distribution of allowances, aid, and loans according to the needs of [federal] regions and governorates nonallied in [federal] regions.
Section 2: The implementation of the most useful use and division of the federal financial revenues.
Section 3: The guarantee of transparency and fairness in allocating the finances to the governments of [federal] regions and governorates according to established proportions.
Article 107: Federal authorities preserve Iraq's unity, [territorial] integrity, independence, sovereignty, and federal democratic system.
Section 1: The federal government assumes the administration of oil and gas extracted from the existing wells along with the governments of the producing [federal] regions and governorates, providing that revenues are distributed in a just way proportionate to the population distribution in all areas of Iraq. For a limited period, a [special] rate will be allocated for the damaged regions that had been unfairly deprived of it by the former regime, and [to those] that were damaged afterwards. This should secure a balanced development for the various regions of the country and will be regulated by law.
Section 2: The federal government along with the governments of the producing [federal] regions and governorates set the strategic policies necessary for the development of oil and gas. This should lead to the highest benefit for the Iraqi people, through relying on the most current methods of marketing and investment incentives.
Section 1: [Federal] regions consist of one or more governorates. Two regions may unite in a single region.
Section 2: One or more governorates may establish a region, based on demand to hold referendum on this. The demand may be raised in one of the two ways:
Clause a) Demand by one-third of the members of governorate councils in the respective governorates that envision the establishment of a region.
Clause b) Demand by one-tenth of the voters in the governorates that envision the establishment of a region.
Clause a) The inhabitants of the relevant governorates vote in a referendum on the subject of Section 1 of the present Article. The referendum must take place during the term of office of the respective governorate councils. The referendum is upheld as valid through the agreement of the majority of voters.
Clause b) The referendum is not repeated again unless two-thirds of the members of each respective governorate council or a quarter of the inhabitants of the governorates demand the holding of a new referendum.
Article 118: The National Council of the region drafts the region's constitution and issues laws, which must not contradict this constitution and Iraq's central laws.
Section 3: A condition for any candidate for the post of the president of republic, prime ministers, a member of the Council of Ministers, chairman of the Council of Representatives [Majlis al-Nuwwab] and of the Federal Council [Majlis al-Ittihad], analogical post in [federal] regions, members of judicial bodies, and other posts underlying to de-Ba'athification in accordance with the [respective] law, is that [the candidate] is not included in de-Ba'athification definitions.
Translation by Petr Kubalek
Copyright (c) 2005. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036. www.rferl.org
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