ERBIL, Kurdistan Region (Kurdistan 24) – The Iraqi Parliament has not managed to reach a consensus over provincial election legislation for Kirkuk as Turkmen and Arabs have demanded special status within the Kurdish majority-populated province.
Mahmood Osman, a Kurdish member of the Iraqi Parliament, told Kurdistan 24 on Saturday that the efforts of all political parties and the Parliamentary Speaker will continue until they reach an agreement to approve the electoral law for the Kirkuk province.
He added there had been a couple of hours-long meetings with representatives of Kirkuk's various communities over the past two days, supervised by Iraqi Parliamentary Speaker Salim al-Jabouri.
“We suggested that the governorship goes to the representative with the most votes, the runner up would get Head of the Provincial Council, third place would be the Governor’s first deputy, and lastly, the role of second deputy would go to the Christians,” the Kurdish MP said.
Arab and Turkmen representatives in Kirkuk allegedly refused to give any of the posts to the Christians in Kirkuk, and insisted the group with the third most votes should get the posts of first and second deputy, Osman added.
Osman stated that Arab and Turkmen parties do not believe in the rights of Christians in Kirkuk. He affirmed, however, that Kurds insist on safeguarding the rights of all communities in the province, including Turkmen, Arabs, and Christians.
Farhad Qadir, another Kurdish MP in Baghdad, stated that “Kurds have no issue regarding provincial electoral laws but insist that Kirkuk have the same status as other provinces under the purview of the electoral commission.”
Editing by G.H. Renaud