Iraq's Maliki drops bid for third term as prime minister: TV

File photo of Iraq's Prime Minister al-Maliki speaking during an interview with Reuters in Baghdad

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BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Nuri al-Maliki has given up his fight to remain prime minister of Iraq and now supports his replacement, Haider al-Abadi, state television reported on Thursday.

Maliki faced immense pressure to step aside for a less polarizing figure capable of countering Islamic State militants who are posing the biggest security threat to Iraq since the fall of Saddam Hussein in 2003.

(Writing by Michael Georgy; Editing by Robin Pomeroy)

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