Iraq’s Kurdish Regional Parliament Elects Interim Speaker Amid Boycott | 2/18/2019 | Staff
ERBIL, Iraq (Reuters) – Iraqi Kurdish lawmakers on Monday elected an interim speaker of parliament, an assembly key to regional stability, although the Kurds’ second largest party boycotted the vote due to a rift between the main political forces in Iraq’s Kurdistan region.

Vala Fareed, nominated by the region’s dominant Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP), was confirmed in the post by 68 votes. She is the first female speaker in Iraq’s Kurdistan region.

Proceedings - Region - Party - Patriotic - Union

However, proceedings were boycotted by the region’s second-biggest party, the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK), amid a breakdown in talks.

“Without a signed political agreement between us, we will neither participate in the parliamentary session nor the government formation process,” PUK spokesman Latif Sheikh Omar said on Monday.

Parliament - Region - Functioning - Stability - Years

The 111-seat parliament legislates the semi-autonomous region, and its functioning is important to regional stability after several years of political upheaval which culminated in an independence referendum in September 2017.

The Kurdistan region was...
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