Iraq’s cabinet on Tuesday approved a draft law creating a national guard, which Sunni political figures have described as a necessary step to achieving national reconciliation.

But a measure to reform the government’s ban on former Baath Party members from government proved divisive. Sunni ministers boycotted the second draft law, saying it did not go far enough, while the rest of the cabinet approved it.

It remains unclear how parliament will greet the two sets of legislation, which are already generating controversy. Approval by the cabinet does not guarantee passage by the parliament. […]