Iraqis secure parliamentary elections


A joint effort by hundreds of thousands of Iraqi police officers and military personnel helped secure early parliamentary elections across the country in October 2021.

The Iraqi Ministry of Interior reported no terrorist attacks, accidents or security breaches, despite the absence of a curfew imposed in previous elections.

The plan for securing the election included the deployment of 300,000 members of the Army, police, Air Force, Military Aviation and civil defense. Aerial surveillance helped ensure that many of Iraq’s 8,278 polling centers were protected from potential terrorist attacks.   

“This election is fundamentally different from all previous elections … which made it nearly or completely consistent with international standards,” said Brig. Gen. Ghaleb al-Attiyah, a spokesman for the Iraqi Election Supreme Security Committee. 

An estimated 9 million Iraqis out of 25 million eligible voters cast ballots, choosing from among 3,200 candidates belonging to 167 parties competing for 329 parliamentary seats.  

Iraq originally planned the election for 2022, but Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi moved up the vote in response to public protests demanding jobs and improved public services. A new election law streamlined voting and provided for greater parliamentary representation by Iraqi minority groups and women.  Sources: Reuters, BBC, Al Jazeera

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