From the Open-Publishing Calendar
From the Open-Publishing Newswire
Indybay Feature
Related Categories: Iraq | International
Turkmen protestors denounce 'electoral fraud' in disputed Iraq oil city
by afp
Sunday Feb 13th, 2005 3:02 PM
BAGHDAD, Feb 13 (AFP) - Members of Iraq's Turkmen minority demonstrated in central Baghdad Sunday to protest alleged electoral fraud in the disputed northern oil city of Kirkuk during last month's historic election.
Around 150 demonstrators crossed the Tigris river and gathered at one of the entrances to the fortified Green Zone, home to the offices of the electoral commmission.

"We want reparation for electoral violations in Turkmen areas," read one banner carried by demonstrators, who rallied just hours before the results of the January 30 vote were due to be announced.

"There were violations in Kirkuk where ballot boxes were stolen," said demonstrator Nawal Mohammed.

Hundreds of Turkmen and Arabs held a similar protest in Kirkuk on Friday condemning alleged fraud and calling for a re-run of the election there.

Iraq's Turkmen say they account for 13 percent of the population of 27 million, but the most recent census dating from 1977 puts the proportion at just two percent.

Final results from the election are expected to show a decisive advance for Iraq's Kurds who want to retake control of Kirkuk after it was Arabised by the regime of former president Saddam Hussein.
by more
Sunday Feb 13th, 2005 3:12 PM
Iraqi Turkmens from northern Iraq hold a demonstration outside Baghdad's so-called 'Green Zone' February 13, 2005. About 100 Iraqi Turkmen protested alleged voting irregularities after the rival Kurdish ethnic group won a large majority in local elections in Kirkuk and had a strong showing in the national elections. REUTERS/Faleh Kheiber

In another sign of tensions ahead, Kurds in the ethnically mixed city of Kirkuk erupted in celebrations after results showed them well ahead in the provincial vote — an outcome that will anger Arabs and Turkmen, who also lay claim to the city.