Armenian community to have representative at Iraqi Kurdistan’s Parliament




Iraq’s self-ruled Kurdish region held long-delayed parliamentary elections on Sunday, a year after a vote for independence sparked a punishing backlash from Baghdad.

The electoral commission is yet to announce election results, but the Armenian community will surely have a representative in the parliament.

Eleven seats in the 111-seat Parliament are reserved for religious and ethnic minorities: five for Christians, five for Turkmen candidates and one for the Armenian community.

Six Armenians were running for Parliament, one of the candidates Edgar Abrahamyan told Public Radio of Armenia.

According to law, the Armenian representative should be an independent MP but represent some political force.

The last parliamentary elections were in the region in 2013, but the assembly stopped meeting in 2015 amid internal political tensions and the war against the Islamic State group.

The political deadlock also delayed new elections, which were originally planned for last November.

All in all, over 700 candidates were running in the elections.

Edgar Abrahamyan said preserving the national identity is the biggest problem the Armenian community faces in Iraqi Kurdistan.

“The youth have no jobs, and this is on top of my election platform. I have good relations with the Barzani family and Kurdish politicians. I can call this to life,” he said.

Edgar Abrahamyan said he wants to teach Armenian, give lectures and present explanations of the gospel.

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