Iraqi lawmakers approve new government; al-Maliki becomes VP

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Former Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Al-Maliki. Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

BAGHDAD (CNN) — Iraqi lawmakers approved a new government Monday and tapped former Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki as one of the country’s vice presidents.

Several key Cabinet posts remain vacant.

Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi vowed to have nominations for the defense and interior minister posts ready to present to Parliament within a week.

Monday’s Parliament vote, just a day before a constitutional deadline, comes as Iraq faces political turmoil and battles a surge of Islamist militants.

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