Governing Council Elects Nine-Member Presidency

Iraq's Governing Council (search), the 25-member body set up by the U.S.-led coalition to run Iraq as an interim administration, elected a nine-member presidency Tuesday.

The U.S. administrator for Iraq, L. Paul Bremer (search), had said when the council was announced on July 13 that its first order of business would be to elect a president, but members have been unable to agree on a single leader.

The council's statement Tuesday gave no details on how the presidency would function.

The council has the right to appoint Cabinet ministers and formulate economic policies and is charged with producing a process to write a new constitution that would pave the way for a general election.

Like the larger Governing Council, the presidency has a slight Shiite Muslim majority, with two Sunni Muslims and two Kurdish leaders represented.

The members of the presidency are: Ahmad Chalabi, Abdel-Aziz al-Hakim, Jalal Talabani, Massoud Barzani, Ibrahim al-Jaafari, Iyad Allawi, Mohsen Abdel-Hamid, Mohammed Bahr al-Uloum and Adnan Pachachi.