Over 1457 in­ter­na­tional ob­servers to mon­i­tor Iraq’s elec­tions

The Kurdish Globe - - NEWS -

For the up­com­ing of the Iraqi par­lia­men­tary elec­tions and provin­cial elec­tions in Kur­dis­tan Re­gion which are sched­uled to be held on 30 April, thou­sands of lo­cal and in­ter­na­tional ob­servers have been recorded to mon­i­tor the events. The aim of this great num­ber of the ob­servers sig­ni­fies the im­por­tance of this year’s elec­tions com­pared to pre­vi­ous ones as Iraq is go­ing through a touchy po­lit­i­cal and ad­min­is­tra­tive process.

"1457 in­ter­na­tional ob­servers would mon­i­tor the com­ing Iraqi par­lia­men­tary elec­tions and the provin­cial elec­tions in Kur­dis­tan Re­gion," said Sar­bast Mustafa, head of The In­de­pen­dent High Elec­toral Com­mis­sion (IHEC)

Ac­cord­ing to Mustafa, the num­ber of ob­servers has in- creased dra­mat­i­cally com­pared to the pre­vi­ous elec­tions.

IHEC is a pro­fes­sional, gov­ern­men­tal, in­de­pen­dent and neu­tral body su­per­vised by the Iraqi Coun­cil of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives. It is ex­clu­sively re­spon­si­ble for or­ga­niz­ing, im­ple­ment­ing and su­per­vis­ing all kinds of elec­tions and ref­er­enda.

Mustafa also said that the process of in­ter­na­tional ob­servers' ac­cred­i­ta­tion is of great im­por­tance this time be­cause the IHEC re­al­izes the im­por­tance and the great role played by them to ver­ify and en­dorse a free and fair elec­toral process.

Cam­paign­ing of­fi­cially kicked off on 1 April for both elec­tions. The par­lia­men­tary elec­tions will de­cide the 328 mem­bers of the Coun­cil of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives who will in turn elect the Iraqi Pres­i­dent and the Prime Min­is­ter.

The IHEC spokesper­son, Safa al Mous­sawi de­clared on 9 April that the IHEC has fined 14 po­lit­i­cal en­ti­ties par­tic­i­pat­ing in the up­com­ing Iraqi par­lia­men­tary elec­tions due to vi­o­lat­ing reg­u­la­tions of the elec­tion cam­paigns ar­ti­cle no. 7 of 2013.

Al Mous­sawi stressed that the IHEC is con­tin­u­ing to mon­i­tor the ir­reg­u­lar­i­ties and vi­o­la­tions dur­ing the pe­riod set by the IHEC to start the elec­toral cam­paigns of the PES, coali­tions, and can­di­dates run­ning for the up­com­ing elec­tions.

IHEC has fi­nal­ized the nec­es­sary pro­ce­dures to des­ig­nate the polling cen­tres and polling sta­tions across Iraq as part of the prepa­ra­tions for the elec­tions. It has opened around 8,075 polling cen­tres and around 48,854 polling sta­tions across the coun­try. The IHEC will open 532 additional spe­cial polling cen­tres and 2,557 spe­cial polling sta­tions for mil­i­tary and se­cu­rity forces to vote in spe­cial polling day on 28 April. The Mil­i­tary and Se­cu­rity Per­son­nel will vote two days prior to the reg­u­lar polling day.

The IHEC will also open polling cen­tres for pa­tients in the hos­pi­tals and pris­on­ers in the jails, the in­ter­nal dis­placed per­sons as well as dis­placed vot­ers from An­bar prov­ince due to the un­sta­ble se­cu­rity sit­u­a­tion there. The IHEC is mo­bi­liz­ing all its ef­forts to hold fair, free and cred­i­ble elec­tions in Iraq.

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