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Iraq's president nominates new prime minister, Haider al-Abadi

Iraqi president Fouad Massoum nominated Haider al-Abadi as Iraq's next prime minister on Monday in a move that is likely to increase political tensions with Iraq's current prime minister, Nouri al-Maliki, who has demanded to remain in power.

Maliki claims that he should retain power since he "commanded the largest bloc in the Iraqi Parliament," according to The New York Times. On Sunday, Maliki gathered Iraqi forces in Baghdad's "Green Zone" to intimidate Iraqi politicians, including Massoum.

Meanwhile, the U.S. has been largely opposed to Maliki's leadership. Maliki, a Shiite Islamist, has been accused of alienating Sunnis, inspiring them to become militants.

Abadi is a member of the Shiite Islamist Dawa Party and has previously served as the first deputy speaker of Iraq's parliament.