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 Kurdish opposition Gorran party calls on Iraqi Kurdistan regional govt to resign 

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Kurdish opposition Gorran party calls on Iraqi Kurdistan regional govt to resign  31.1.2011  

Seizing on Egypt tumult, Kurdish splinter party calls on Iraqi regional govt to resign

January 31, 2011

SULAIMANIYAH, Kurdistan region 'Iraq', — The main opposition party in Iraq's Kurdish north is calling on the regional government to resign, saying protests in the Arab world should be a wakeup call for its leaders.

The reformist group called Gorran, Kurdish for "Change," said Sunday that the ruling parties in the three provinces comprising the semiautonomous northern Kurdistan region are corrupt and don't represent the people.

The parties — the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan PUK and the Kurdistan Democratic Party KDP — quickly rebuffed the appeal and said Gorran was trying to take advantage of the situation in Egypt, Tunisia and elsewhere. But they promised reforms.

The ruling parties in the Kurdish region, which was relatively peaceful during Iraq's war,         

Nawshirwan Mustafa, leader of the opposition party of Gorran. A rally of the Kurdish opposition party Change in Sulaimaniyah, Kurdistan region of Iraq, March 2010. Photo Shwan Mohammed/AFP/Getty Images
have maintained a firm grip on power despite allegations of corruption and media intimidation.

Gorran’s spokesman, Mohammed Tofiq Rahim, expressed Gorran’s intentions more clearly, saying the Kurdish people may start protesting against the Kurdish leadership if it did not make genuine reforms.

“Waves of protest are resonating across the world,” said Rahim on KNN. “If the KDP and PUK don’t reform, that could happen here as well.”

Gorran emerged in regional elections in 2009 as a rival to the two main ruling Kurdish parties and won 25 seats in the parliament. Gorran is challenging Talabani's PUK,
www.ekurd.netand the KDP of regional president Massoud Barzani and accuses the parties of corruption.

The Gorran is headed by the former senior PUK-leader Nawshirwan Mustafa, who was Talabani’s deputy until 2007. Since the July 2009 elections in which it secured almost a third of the seats of 111-member Parliament of Kurdistan.

In its statement Gorran party asked for the extinguishment of Federal Kurdistan Regional Government and Kurdistan Regional Parliament and forming of a neutral technocrat government instead.

Calling on the Kurdish government to resign on the notice, Gorran party reclaimed the possessions sequestrated by governor and parties.

The 7 articles of the statement and and demands of Gorran party are as follows:

* Dismiss of KDP and PUK from the government, parliament, judiciary, security forces and Peshmerga forces,

* Removal of Security Forces (Parastın, Zanyari, Peshmerga) from the political arena,

* Extinguishment of KDP and PUK government and the forming of a neutral technocrat government instead,

* Extinguishment of Kurdistan Regional Parliament and enabling of making the elections in a transparent way within 3 months,

* Restitution of the possessions sequestrated by governor and parties to the public,

* Withdrawal of the Kurdistan Region Constitution Draft and referring the draft to the new parliament to be formed.

Gorran party asked the political circles in the Kurdistan Region to support the demands on the paper.

A demonstration is expected to take place on Monday in Sulaimaniyah city to protest the shortage of electricity in Kurdistan.

Gorran said it was not behind the protest, and meanwhile the KRG has promised to supply Sulaimaniyah province with 21 hours of power per day, starting February.

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