TEHRAN (Press Shia Agency) – Americans are mainly responsible for what happened to Iraq because they were the first to form a government on a base of confessional quotas, former Iraqi defense minister said.

"Americans are mainly responsible for what happened to Iraq because they were the first to form a government on a base of confessional quotas… It was decided under Paul Bremer's [US Presidential envoy and head of the transitional government during US military presence in Iraq] leadership that Sunnis would get 5 ministerial offices, Shiites — 11, and Kurds — 7. This decision laid the foundation of the discord between confessional and ethnic groups and led us to the situation in modern Iraq with its sectarianism and inter-ethnic hostilities," the former Iraqi Minister of Defense Khaled Yassin al-Obaidi told Sputnik.

The elections were initially set for September but were postponed due to the fight against the Daesh (ISIL or ISIS) terrorist group. Thereby it is the first time the country holds an election since Daesh was declared defeated.

Obaidi is also among the leaders of the Victory Alliance, a coalition established by Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi.

Major coalitions were put forward by the leading Shiite politicians of the country — Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi and Vice-President Nuri al-Maliki. There are 6,686 candidates, 2,014 of them women, for 328 seats in the parliament.

The US launched its Operation Iraqi Freedom on March 20, 2003, claiming that the then-president of the country, Saddam Hussein, was developing weapons of mass destruction and colluding with al-Qaeda. The operation led to the overthrow of Saddam and was followed by an eight-year-long US military presence in Iraq.