Iraqis are marking the provisional results of the country's landmark election. Posters praising the courage of voters are plastered across cities like Basra.
Candidates endorsed by the country's most influential cleric, Grand Ayatollah Ali Sistani, gained 48% of the votes cast.
Iraqi Kurds - who represent almost a fifth of the population - are also celebrating their strong showing.
Polling 26% of the ballots, Kurdish groups are now seen as potential partners in a new government.
The results have given the biggest share to Iraq's religious Shias, while a secular list led by Prime Minister Iyad Allawi received just 14%.
Security - which was tightened after a surge in violence ahead of the elections - will be one of the main demands made of Iraq's new government.