Prime Minister Barzani met with leaders of the Change Movement (Gorran), the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) the IKU in Sulaimani. Official photo
SULAIMANI, Kurdistan Region--The question of Kurdistan Region’s parliamentary elections were the main point of discussions between Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani and political parties in Sulaimani during his visit to the city over the weekend to find a way out of the current deadlock.
“The prime minister wanted this subject to be settled through agreement in an all-party meeting,” Mustafa Abdullah, an official from the Kurdistan Islamic Union (KIU) told Rudaw.
Prime Minister Barzani met with leaders of the Change Movement (Gorran), the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) the KIU.
Abdullah said that his party, like others, is for elections and wants a smooth process though they hope the Election Commission can prepare and present a clear voter numbers to avoid fraud.
The PUK for its part also agreed that elections should be held on time as soon as the current term of parliament and government expires which was extended for eight months on October 24, 2017.
“The elections should be held on the day the extended term of the parliament expires,” Farid Asasard, member of the PUK leadership council said. “We don’t support the proposal to hold snap elections.”
“We have voted for the extension of the term of the parliament, and should therefore commit to it.” Asasard argued.
Asasard said that preparing for elections takes time and that the current parliament and cabinet must be given their time.
The Islamic League (Komal) believes that elections should have been held as initially planned on November 1.
“Because it is elections that could resolve the impasse in the Kurdistan Region,” Komal’s spokesman Rebwar Hamad said.
The PUK—one of the two major parties—is for elections in June 2018 by then it hopes to have resolved internal party disputes.
It is also trying to persuade Gorran to come on board for a date next year.
Leaders of the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) say their party is ready for elections on any date agreed by all parties.
“We are prepared to participate in the elections whether they are delayed or brought forward,” Fazil Basharati, a KDP leadership member told Rudaw.
“What is important is a time on which all parties agree,” he added.
In the meantime Kurdistan Region’s Election Commission has asked the health ministry for an up-to-date list of deceased peoples in order to remove them from the names of eligible voters.
For Gorran, the question of the presidency and his powers still remain an unresolved issue.
“If the question of the region’s presidency resurfaces, the president’s powers should be honorary and elected by the parliament,” Dr Mohammed Ali, head of Gorran’s office for political research, said. “However, I think this position should be removed,”