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Kuwait elects new parliament speaker

(Xinhua)

10:43, February 16, 2012

KUWAIT CITY, Feb. 15 (Xinhua) -- Veteran politician Ahmad Al- Sadoun on Wednesday was elected by a majority vote as Kuwait's new parliament speaker.

Al-Sadoun, 77, garnered 26 out of the 38 votes on Wednesday's opening session of the new parliament dominated by Islamist lawmakers.

Al-Sadoun was also elected parliament speaker in the sixth, seventh and eighth terms of the legislature.

Kuwaiti Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah inaugurated Wednesday's session and called on the new government and parliament to cooperate and end disputes in order to overcome internal and external challenges.

Islamist candidates secured a landslide victory by winning 34 seats in the 50-strong outspoken parliament in a snap election held on Feb. 2.

A new cabinet led by Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber Al-Mubarak Al- Hamad Al-Sabah was sworn in on Tuesday, with key posts such as defense, interior and foreign affairs being held by members from the ruling al-Sabah family.

Oil-rich Kuwait was not hit by the wave of anti-government protests rampant in the Middle East region. However, escalated tensions between the government and parliament have twice forced the cabinet to resign in the past year.

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