Iraqi gov't approves recommendations over fraud in parliamentary election

Source: Xinhua| 2018-06-06 04:04:57|Editor: yan
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BAGHDAD, June 5 (Xinhua) -- The Iraqi government Tuesday approved the recommendations of a high-level committee to investigate allegations of fraud and irregularities in the parliamentary election held on May 12.

A statement issued by Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi office said that the Council of Ministers (cabinet headed by Abadi) approved the recommendations which included a manual recounting of no less than five percent of votes at all ballot stations, and the cancellation of results from overseas and displaced voters.

The committee also recommended that the Council of Ministers orders the judiciary and security authorities to prosecute the accused individuals in accordance with the law, the statement said after the cabinet weekly meeting.

The recommendations stated that high-ranking members of the Independent High Electoral Commission (IHEC) to be banned from travelling abroad without permission of Abadi personally, the statement said.

The cabinet referred the approved recommendations to the Integrity Commission to investigate and take measures, and to the parliament to take appropriate measures, it added.

For his part, the Parliament Speaker Salim al-Jubouri welcomed the cabinet decision to approve the high-ranking committee recommendations, and called on the members of parliaments to attend an emergency session on Wednesday in order to complete the role played by the Council of Representatives (parliament) in standing against fraud and forgery in order to safeguard the political process.

On May 24, Abadi met with top judicial, intelligence officials, and the security committee of the electoral commission to discuss immunity of the electronic devices used in casting and counting the votes for the first time in the Iraqi election.

The cabinet appointed a special committee to investigate the allegations before sending its recommendation to the Council of Ministers, high judicial council and the federal court to take their decision about the election process and its results.

Many Iraqi parties, especially in the semi-autonomous region of Kurdistan and the disputed areas, including Kirkuk province, have complained about alleged irregularities and forgery in the parliamentary election.

The complaints put IHEC under pressure, as the electoral commission has not carried out manual recount of many ballot boxes and depended only on the electronic count of the votes.

On May 12, millions of Iraqis went to 8,959 polling centers across the country to vote for their parliamentary representatives in the first general election after Iraq's historic victory over the Islamic State (IS) group last December.