Yezidi Minority Accuses Kurdish Party of Violations Ahead of Elections
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Sinjar, Iraq (AINA) -- The leader of the Yezidi Movement for Progress and Reform, Amin Farhan, accused last Thursday the Kurdish Democratic Party, led by Massoud Barazani, of election violations in the mainly Yezidi area in northern Iraq, reported Voices of Iraq. The KDP party is accused of using Iraqi army soldiers of Kurdish origin to carry out election campaign work, such as putting up posters in Yezidi towns and villages and giving special protection to KDP officials who hold rallies.

"The Yezidi Movement for Progress and Reform has filed a complaint with the Iraqi Election Commission office in Mosul, providing proof in the form of video tapes of the acts of the soldiers", said Amin Farhan, who is the only independent Yezidi member of parliament in Iraq.

In the 2005 Iraqi elections, Kurdish militias attached to the KDP party rigged elections in minority areas, preventing tens of thousands of Assyrians and Yezidies from casting their votes. The U.S. Department of State's 2005 Human Rights Country Report for Iraq states:

"In the January elections, many of the mostly non-Muslim residents on the Nineveh Plain were unable to vote. Some polling places did not open, ballot boxes were not delivered, and incidents of voter fraud and intimidation occurred. These problems resulted from administrative breakdowns on voting day and the refusal of Kurdish security forces to allow ballot boxes to pass to predominantly Christian villages."

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