US President Barack Obama has congratulated Iraqis for holding a largely peaceful vote for provincial councils across the country.
He called the elections "an important step forward" for Iraqi self-determination. PM Nouri Maliki hailed them as "a victory for all the Iraqis".
There was a strong turn-out in Sunni areas, which boycotted the last polls.
The first nationwide vote in four years is seen as a test of stability before a general election due later this year.
"I congratulate the people of Iraq on holding significant provincial elections today," Mr Obama said in a statement.