From Holden:

Five days before the Iraqi election, the names of the candidates are finally released.

Iraq’s Election Commission has begun disclosing the names of candidates running in Sunday’s poll amid fears they might be targeted by Sunni insurgents.

The names of the majority of candidates remained secret in order to protect them from terrorists led by Abu Musab Zarqawi, who has declared war on the elections to select a legislative council which will be entrusted with drafting Iraq’s new constitution.

“Publishing the names of candidates only five days before the elections is aimed at ensuring an honest process and introducing them to potential voters,” a statement by the commission said Tuesday.

The commission announced the official launch of the election campaign Dec. 15, but only the heads of electoral lists were revealed while the names of most candidates remained unknown.