Kurdistan Regional

Kurdistan Regional (424)

Prime Minister Barzani addresses Kurdistan Parliament

Erbil, Kurdistan (KRG.org) - The Prime Minister yesterday addressed the Kurdistan Parliament at length regarding the Region's financial situation, disputes with Baghdad, natural resources, and other matters. An excerpt of his address is below:

President Barzani Casts His Vote

Salahaddin, Kurdistan Region of Iraq (KRP.org) – Kurdistan Region President Masoud Barzani earlier today cast his vote for both the Iraqi Council of Representatives and Kurdistan Region provincial elections in a polling station in Salahaddin.

 

 

 

 

President Barzani Congratulates People of Kurdistan and Iraq on Election Completion

Salahaddin, Kurdistan Region of Iraq (KRP.org) – Kurdistan Region President Masoud Barzani congratulated the people of Kurdistan and Iraq for their participation and praised them for their high turnout and for exercising their democratic right to vote.

In a message, the President said,” On the successful holding of elections for both the Iraqi Council of Representatives and the Kurdistan Region provincial councils, I congratulate the people of Kurdistan, political side and the Iraqi people. I specially thank the police and the security forces for ensuring security on the election day.”

The President added that, “Both local and international observers and independent NGOs have praised this successful election. I hope the results of this election will bring happiness to our people and will lead to further development of democracy in Kurdistan.”

“I call on all political sides to accept the official results which will be announced by the Independent High Electoral Commission. I hope the results will encourage all sides to work together and put national interests first.”



 

 

 

 

Members of Kurdistan Parliament choose Speaker, Deputy Speaker and Secretary

Erbil, Kurdistan Region, Iraq ‎(KRG.org) – Today members of the Kurdistan Parliament elected  Yousif Mohammed as the new Speaker of Parliament, Jafar Eminki as Deputy Speaker and Fakhraldin Qadir as Secretary.

 

After months of negotiation following the elections in September, several parties are expected to form a broad-based coalition government. Today's session was a continuation of the first parliamentary session, which opened in November, and brings the process of government formation a step closer.

 

The Speaker of Parliament, Mr Mohammed, is a member of the Gorran or Change movement and was elected by fellow MPs with 84 votes, while Mr Eminki, from the Kurdistan Democratic Party, was elected with 78 votes. Mr Qadir, of the Kurdistan Islamic Group (referred to as Komal), received 73 votes.

 

The parliament is an 111-seat chamber. KDP won 38 seats in the September elections, Gorran 24, the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan 18, the Kurdistan Islamic Union 10 and Komal 6. The remaining seats are taken by other parties and the minority Christians and Turkmen who have a quota of 11 seats.‎ The parliament also has a 30% quota of female MPs.

 

 

 

 

Kurdistan holds peaceful federal and provincial elections amid high turnout

Erbil, Kurdistan Region, Iraq (KRG.org) – Elections for the Iraqi parliament and the provincial councils of Erbil, Slemani and Duhok went ahead peacefully and with a high turnout ‎in the Kurdistan Region.

According to initial estimates from various media outlets, 70% of eligible voters cast their ballot in Kirkuk, 73% cast their ballot in Duhok, 77% cast their ballot in Erbil and 73% cast their ballot in Slemani. Voting began at 7am and ended at 6pm and there was no curfew in the region and no security incidents were reported. Iraqi airspace was closed from 12 PM on 28 April until 6 PM today. Voting was conducted through the use of electronic cards.

The Kurdistan Regional Government has worked closely with the Independent High Electoral Commission of Iraq in the run-up to the election to ensure a free and fair vote in the Kurdistan Region. There were over 1250 local and over 280 international observers monitoring the elections in Kurdistan, including teams from the United Nations, many of the consulates based in Erbil, the Arab League, and foreign and domestic non-governmental organisations.

The US Secretary of State John Kerry said, “Millions of Iraqis courageously voted today and reaffirmed not just their commitment to democracy, but their determination to achieve a more secure and peaceful future. Iraqis from every ethnic and religious group, and from all 18 provinces, [voted] in an election critical to advancing the vision of a democratic, united, federal, and pluralistic Iraq as defined in the Iraqi constitution.”

Other governments also issued statements supporting the electoral turnout. British Foreign Secretary William Hague said, “Despite the serious challenges that Iraq faces, it is inspiring to see that millions of Iraqis have seized the opportunity to choose their new government and I pay tribute to their courage and commitment to the future of their country.”

The Special Representative of the Secretary General for Iraq and Head of the UN Assistance Mission in Iraq (UNAMI), Nickolay Mladenov, said whilst visiting a polling station today that “Iraqis face tight security measures, yet are determined to vote in an election, crucial to democratic transition.”

Iraq’s federal elections will determine the composition of the federal parliament and eventually lead to the formation of the next Iraqi government. Kurdistan Region’s provincial elections will determine the governing councils of the Region’s governorates, which will be tasked with choosing governors for each province. IHEC will release official results for both the federal and provincial elections after the votes have been counted and registered complaints regarding the voting process have been investigated.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Slovakian Ambassador visits Kurdistan

Erbil, Kurdistan Region, Iraq – (KRG.org) – The Head of the Department of Foreign Relations (DFR), Minister Falah Mustafa met today with the Slovakian Ambassador to Iraq, Mr. Miloslav Nad to discuss furthering bilateral relations between the Slovak Republic and Kurdistan.

The meeting was also attended by the Assistant Head of the DFR, Ms. Siham Jabali and the Honorary Consul of the Slovak Republic, Mr. Ahmed Gerdi.

Ambassador Nad was pleased to be in Kurdistan and commended the KRG on its efforts in developing the region, and added his country’s desire to bolster bilateral relations across many sectors.

He spoke about Slovakian efforts to grant visas to the people of Kurdistan through the office of a partner country in Erbil by the end of this year. In addition, he informed the Minister of his government’s willingness to upgrade their diplomatic representation in Kurdistan in the near future.

Minister Mustafa welcomed the Ambassador’s visit and reiterated the KRG’s willingness to consolidate its relations with Central and Eastern Europe and stated “we can learn and benefit from the expertise of countries such as Slovakia in various fields.”

The Minister went on to brief the delegation on the developments between Erbil and Baghdad, highlighting that the upcoming parliamentary elections in Iraq and the provincial elections in Kurdistan, scheduled to take place in less than two weeks, which would define the future political landscape of the country. He added that the KRG is committed to the Iraqi Constitution, a democratic system and genuine partnership.

Finally, both sides discussed the upcoming Global Security Forum (GLOBSEC 2014) scheduled for May in Bratislava, to which Minister Mustafa has been invited. Minister Mustafa’s attendance will help boost KRG’s engagement with Central and Eastern Europe - consolidating relations with the EU member states goes in line with the KRG's open door policy.
 

 

 

 

 

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