Abadi hits the campaign trail
Updated: Sep 11, 2018
By SETH J. FRANTZMAN
Iraq Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi is campaigning hard for the elections, even as he uses trips in late April to visit martyrs and others to bolster his image.
He has been in the Kurdish region's two main parts, Erbil and Sulaimaniyah. He also travelled to Mosul and Mosul Dam and visited the Nineveh operations center to discuss security. In addition he sought to go to Sunni Arab areas, Fallujah and Salah-a-Din province. In a country divided by sectarianism he is seeking to portray himself as a unifying voice ahead of the elections. The question is whether this will undermine other groups, such as Muqtada al-Sadr or Nouri al-Maliki. Will Sunnis respond or go with Nujaifi and Allawi?
A map of his travels reveals that he has traveled to 6 of the country's 19 provinces. These are also key provinces for voter turnout. The only exception of a strategic place to visit is Kirkuk.