Iraqi Kurdistan (Basûrê Kurdistan) and the Iraqi people went to the polls today, 10 October, to elect members of parliament. There are 3,249 candidates from 167 political parties in the elections. Voting started in the early hours, but in Sinjar it started an hour later than the rest of Iraq.
Voters were to vote in 427 ballot boxes at 52 polling stations in Sinjar, and about 68,000 voters were called to the polls. However, voting at many polling stations has been stopped for technical reasons. In total, voting has been stopped at 21 polling stations, leaving only 31 open, Roj News reports.
Voting has been stopped due to technical problems in the Tilezêr, Sîba Shêx Xidir and Til Qeseb regions South of Mount Sinjar, and the Borik, Sînûn, and Xanesor regions north of Mount Sinjar. Because of this, many people have been turned away from the polling stations without being able to exercise their votes.
Jelal Havind from Xanesor, one of the citizens disenfranchised due to technical problems, said he had been to the polling station three times since morning, but he had not been able to vote.
He thinks they are playing dirty political games in the elections in Sinjar.
“I went to the polling station three times and each time I had to come away. The problem is not in their equipment, it’s in their plans. The Yazidi people of have been flocking to the polls all morning. But they have not been allowed to vote on the grounds that the equipment is faulty.”
The results of the elections in Sinjar are of supreme importance for the future of Sinjar. Journalist Aziz Köylüoğlu explained it with the following words:
“The Iraqi central government, Turkey and the KDP would like to remove Sinjar’s autonomous status. The status of Sinjar will be determined to a certain extent in the elections. Those living in Sinjar could well cast their votes in favour of autonomy. If they do this they will have sent an important message to the Iraqi central government and the Kurdistan Regional Administration. The people of Sinjar have been saying, ‘we will live autonomously’ for a year now. But there are those who live outside Sinjar, but whose votes count towards Sinjar’s votes. This could upset the balance of the votes.”