KDP calls for inquiry into alleged election meddling by PUK in Iraqi Kurdistan

KDP calls for inquiry into alleged election meddling by PUK in Iraqi Kurdistan

Shafaq News/ On Monday, Pshtiwan Sadiq, a prominent member of the Political Bureau of the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP), called for an investigation into a political party's purported "obstruction" of parliamentary elections in the Kurdistan Region over the past two and a half years.

In a speech delivered in Erbil, Sadiq voiced concerns regarding the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) actions, alleging that they utilized the Federal Court to manipulate election outcomes in the Region.

"The Patriotic Union of Kurdistan, through the Federal Court in an unconstitutional manner, attempted to create a plan to alter the results of elections in the Kurdistan Region," stated Sadiq during his address.

"The Kurdistan Democratic Party and any other democratic force are not prepared to accept this and impose unconstitutional decisions on the people of the Kurdistan Region." He added.

Last February, Iraq's Supreme Court issued rulings related to the Kurdistan Region's election law.

The court declared that a specific article concerning the minority quota in KRG's provincial election law was deemed "unconstitutional." This article, part of a law initially adopted in 1992 and revised in 2013, mandates 11 quota seats in the Regional parliament for ethnic and religious minorities. 

Furthermore, the verdict stated that Iraq's Independent High Electoral Commission will take over from KRG's electoral commission to supervise parliamentary elections, which are anticipated to occur next June.

The decision also divided Kurdistan into four constituencies, Al-Sulaymaniya, Erbil, Duhok, and Halabja, instead of the single-constituency system in previous elections.

The court ruling stemmed from legal actions by Kurdish political factions opposed to the KDP's dominance in politics within the Kurdistan Region. 

The PUK said later that it is fully prepared to participate in the upcoming June elections and is committed to the date announced by President Nechirvan Barzani.

On March 2023, KDP announced boycotting the upcoming parliamentary elections, denouncing the decisions made by the Iraqi Federal Supreme Court. 

Notably, one of the main issues that could empower the federal government is the political division in Kurdistan.

KDP predominantly governs the Region, yet the PUK wields considerable influence in the Region's political and military realms.

Although the KDP and PUK are partners in the ruler coalition, the State Administration (SAC), their relationship has been strained for years, primarily concerning power and revenue distribution issues.

The latest difference is over the federal court rulings regarding the elections.

PUK's member, Burhan Saeed, stated, "We believe that the decisions of the Federal Supreme Court are in the interest of the Region and its people and do not affect Kurdistan's entity and constitutionality."

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