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The Iraqi Candidate

Documentaries

The Iraqi Candidate

Abdulrahman by the Tigris

TX Al Jazeera English March 2010 - Watch the film

Abdulrahman Dheyab has left his young wife, newborn son and a comfortable life in London to risk his life standing as a parliamentary candidate in Iraq's elections.

His goal is to create a new politics in Iraq after decades of dictatorship, a US occupation, sectarian civil war and now an out-of-touch political class. None of the MPs elected to the area of his home village in the last elections in 2005 has ever visited their voters - Abdulrahman is determined to make things change. His belief in a politics of service to the community is modelled, after four years spent living in the UK, on the British Conservative Party.

Abdulrahman opposed the rise of Al Qaeda in Iraq during the height of the sectarian strife in 2006-07, and he still has many enemies. Despite the signficant personal danger, however, he is determined to compete in the elections - and his campaign will be politics at its most basic; standing on a platform of new jobs and infrastructure for the villagers with whom he grow up, personally lobbying for support among clan leaders, canvassing the local militias.

Throughout the twists and turns of a tense campaign, this film tells a story of courage, duty and love in a world dark with violence.