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Four Kurdistani parties meeting Saturday to decide Baghdad approach

By Rudaw 9/8/2018

SULAIMANI, Kurdistan Region — An official from the Kurdistan Islamic Union said their party and three other parties from Kurdistan Region — which raised concerns over Iraqi May 12 election — will convene Saturday.


Samir Saleem, the head of KIU’s executive council, told Rudaw on Thursday that their meeting with Change Movement (Gorran), the Kurdistan Islamic Group (Komal), and the Coalition for Democracy and Justice (CDJ) will be held at Gorran headquarters in Sulaimani.


Saleem said that they will discuss the results of Iraq's parliamentary election held on May 12 and how Kurds should participate in the formation of the new Iraqi cabinet and upcoming KRG election.


These four parties have rejected the outcome of Iraqi parliamentary election and accused the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) and the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) of rigging and corruption, typically in Sulaimani and Kirkuk provinces where PUK gained victory.


Mohammed Rauf, a founding member of CDJ who was formerly a member of KIU’s leadership council, told Rudaw in late May that his party and the other three were working on forming a coalition.


“We are working on forming a coalition with one vision and one agenda for Baghdad. We are working on forming the same thing for Kurdistan. Most party leaders and officials believe that we should form one faction in the future in Kurdistan,” said Rauf.


The four parties collectively won around 11 seats in Iraq’s parliamentary election on May 12: Gorran 5, CDJ 2, Komal 2, and KIU 2. Together with the KDP's 25, PUK's 18, the Kurdistani parties have as much sway as Muqtada al-Sadr's winning Sayirun Alliance.


The four parties demanded a recount of votes in several provinces where they alleged fraud. The recount has been completed, but the results not announced. After a round of political party appeals, the final and official results will pend a ruling from Iraq’s federal court.


The Kurdistan Region is scheduled to hold a parliamentary election on September 30. It last held elections in 2013. Some PUK officials have said all Kurdistani parties want the election delayed; however, the KDP’s politburo, along with most other parties, deny this and say they want the election to be held as scheduled.


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