Iraqi President Barham Salih (C) speaks during a meeting to discuss early elections in Iraq that is scheduled on June 6 2020, with the attendance of Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi (L), Council of Representatives’’ Speaker Muhammad al-Halbusi (R), and Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Iraq Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert (not pictured) along the head and members from the federal Independent High Electoral Commission (IHEC) in Baghdad, Iraq on November 16, 2020. (Photo Credit: Iraqi Presidency)
SULAIMANI —The three Iraqi presidencies on Monday (November 16) emphasized the importance of increasing biometric voter registration rate and developing mechanisms that help in the registration process for adopting biometric card in the upcoming early election that is scheduled on June 6 in the coming year.
In a large-scale meeting aimed to provide a safe and stable ambiance for proceeding the early elections in the country, Iraqi President Barham Salih, Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi, Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Iraq Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert and the head and members from the federal Independent High Electoral Commission (IHEC) met, according to Salih’s office.
The attendees discussed “appropriate measures in accordance with the law to ensure that the displaced and Iraqis living abroad vote biometrically,” read the statement.
“The meeting dealt with the important joints in the electoral process in order to provide a safe and stable environment for conducting the elections and to check on the safety of the procedures applied by the Commission and the relevant competent authorities to implement the electoral process and address the challenges that all face.”
They also stressed the signing of agreements with international companies to check and monitor the impending election in consultation with United Nations Assistance Mission in Iraq (UNAMI).
Holding an early election Iraq was one of the essential demands by the protesters that rocked the country last October, who accuse the current ruling elite of endemic corruption, colossal unemployment and decline in human rights in the country.
The first wave of protests began last year on October 1 and lasted for approximately a week before resuming on October 25. The demonstrations were widespread throughout the central and southern governorates.
The United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) has documented that 487 protesters were killed since October 1, 2019, mostly by the security forces or unidentified third groups. Thousands of others were wounded.
In response to the demonstrations, then-Prime Minister Adil Abdul Mahdi stepped down in November, while his replacement Kadhimi announced an early parliamentary election.
(NRT Digital Media)