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Kurdistan

Mixed Reaction to Latest Results from Kurdistan Polls

By Rudaw 29/9/2013
The head of the Election Commission in Erbil, Serbast Amedi, gave reporters the latest results on Saturday, saying 95 percent of the votes had been counted.
The head of the Election Commission in Erbil, Serbast Amedi, gave reporters the latest results on Saturday, saying 95 percent of the votes had been counted.

 

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region – Political parties in the autonomous Kurdistan Region have expressed mixed reactions to the latest results from this month’s parliamentary vote, with two opposition parties saying the tally does not sound right.

The head of the Election Commission in Erbil, Serbast Amedi, gave reporters the latest results on Saturday, saying 95 percent of the votes had been counted.

The count placed the heavyweight Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) in first place, the opposition Change Movement (Gorran) second, the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) trailing third and two smaller Islamic parties coming fourth and fifth.

According to Amedi the KDP had received some 719,000 votes, Gorran’s share was 446,000 and PUK received close to 324,000 votes.

The KDP was quick to congratulate its supporters for a “resounding victory.”

“We owe this victory to our people,” read a KDP statement on Saturday. “And through providing better public services, expanding the freedoms and participation in the political process we will try to pay back that debt,” it vowed.

On the website of its main bureau in Sulaimani, PUK spokesman Azad Jundiani said: “Despite our reservations and complaints, we respect the democratic decision and will of our people,”

He added that, “Kurdistan’s political situation has stepped into the stage of negotiations among the parties for deciding the region’s future political process and government.”

Jundiani said that the PUK – the KDP’s ruling partner in the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) -- will responsibly play its role in the next parliament.

Recent statements by senior PUK officials demonstrate that the PUK has come to terms with the outcome of the elections and its true standing among all other groups.

“A dialogue and exchange of opinions would include all parties that ran in the elections and have won seats in parliament,” said Jundiani.

The PUK was trounced at the polls by Gorran, which was formed in 2009 by a breakaway faction. 

Aram Sheikh Muhammad, Gorran’s election commissioner, told his party’s mouthpiece website, sbeiy, that it is too soon “to accept the election results.”

Muhammad said that many of Gorran’s votes are still unaccounted for and that, “We will pursue until we have retrieved every single one of our votes.”

According to the Election Commission results from the September 21 polls Gorran has won 23.7 percent of the votes, giving it 24 seats – one short of the number of seats Gorran holds in the current 111-seat assembly.

“We still have time to compare the figures released by the election commission to what we have heard through our own sources,” said Muhammad.

Meanwhile Irfan Abdulaziz, leader of the Islamic Movement of Kurdistan, told a press conference that he believed the ballots “had been tampered with.” He said the IMK will complain to the Election Commission.

“The results released by the commission do not match the figures we received from our representatives,” said Abdulaziz. “We believe the ballots have been tampered with, but we don’t quite know in whose interest.”

The IMK, which used to be the third-strongest party in the Kurdistan Region in the 1990s -- parallel to the PUK and KDP -- lost its stature after several internal splits later that decade.

According to Saturday’s results the group has lost one of the only two seats it held in the Kurdish parliament.

Also on Saturday, Erbil police chief Abdulkhaiq Talaat warned that celebratory fire related to the elections results would not be tolerated, and that offenders would be prosecuted.

Last week, after an early count was released, several people were killed in Erbil, Sulaimani and Garmiyan by stray bullets and celebratory fire.

 

Comments

 
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Slemani | 29/9/2013
According to all observers, the elections were fair and without manipulation. But radical groups like Gorran or the Islamic Movement directly claim that the election were manipulated, just because each of them lost 1 seat in the parliament.
Xelil | 29/9/2013
The PDK is the winner of this elections, thanks to the development that Kurdistan had under the rule of the PDK. The PDK have no real rival, they won 8 more seats compered to the last elections and have now 38 seats. All other parties lost many seats, except The Islamic parties Yakgrtu and Komal, they also won more seats, but are still very weak. Now PDK can freely chose its partner.
Hewleri | 29/9/2013
The PDK is the winner of this elections, thanks to the development that Kurdistan had under the rule of the PDK. The PDK have no real rival, they won 8 more seats compered to the last elections and have now 38 seats. All other parties lost many seats, except The Islamic parties Yakgrtu and Komal, they also won more seats, but are still very weak. Now PDK can freely chose its partner.
Shorsh | 30/9/2013
I hope KDP's well-earned victory does not cause them to be complacent in regards to eradicating corruption. On a side note, the picture in this article makes me proud to be a Kurd because it shows supporters of two rival groups next to each other and being civil.
Shayan | 30/9/2013
Lets celebrate baby steps of democracy! lets accept the people's will and vote. Today is the a day for celebrations in Kurdistan and entire region. it is a major step toward democracy. Shayan
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