Iraq's al-Maliki steps down, backs new prime minister: reports

Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki said Thursday he is giving up his post and endorses Haider al-Abadi who has been appointed for the position, reports from Iraq said.

Al-Maliki, who claimed al-Abadi's appointment as unconstitutional, has been losing support at home and abroad. Al-Maliki's resignation is likely to help the establishment of a national unity government by al-Abadi.