File Photo: Iraqi Shia Muslim leader Muqtada Al-Sadr speaks during a sit-in at the gates of Baghdad's heavily fortified Green Zone March 27, 2016. (Photo: Reuters)
Muqtada Al-Sadr, the influential Iraqi Shia cleric whose political coalition came in first in last year's national elections says he's suspending participation in parliament activities until the government introduces a program that serves Iraqi aspirations.
Al-Sadr has asked members of his parliament bloc to boycott sessions until the government issues a program acceptable to the people.
Al-Sadr's Sairoon electoral list won the largest single bloc of seats in parliament elections last year. The bloc has 54 seats in the 329-member parliament.
The move comes after Iraq's top Shiite authority, Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, blamed lawmakers for failing to enact reforms and eradicate corruption.