Barzani re-elected as Iraqi Kurd president

Last Updated: Thursday, July 30, 2009 - 10:30

Arbil: Massud Barzani was re-elected president of Iraq`s autonomous region of Kurdistan and the two main Kurdish parties, which ran on a joint parliamentary list, won 57 percent of the vote in weekend elections, official results showed.
Barzani, who had been widely expected to win, secured 69.57 percent of the popular vote in Saturday`s poll.

The joint Kurdistania list, comprising Barzani`s Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) and the Patriotic Union Kurdistan (PUK) of Jalal Talabani, meanwhile, won 57 percent of the legislative vote.

According to the results, a key opposition grouping called Change won 23.57 percent of parliamentary votes, faring much better than expected.

Change, largely made up of PUK defectors, and a leftist-Islamist list called Services and Reform have condemned what they have called voter fraud in the elections, insisting they made bigger breakthroughs than preliminary results showed.

Services and Reform won 12.8 percent of the parliamentary vote, according to today`s results.

Nearly 80 percent of the autonomous Kurdish region`s 2.5 million voters took part in what poll officials trumpeted as a transparent election.

The vote was held at a key time in Iraq`s transition as regional leaders remain locked in a bitter dispute with Baghdad over land and oil, while local voters also voiced increasing concern over corruption.

Bureau Report

First Published: Thursday, July 30, 2009 - 10:30

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