Chaldean–Syriac–Assyrian parties denounce Iraq’s new election law in joint statement

BAGHDAD / ANKAWA, Iraq — In a joint statement, political parties representing the Chaldean–Syriac–Assyrian people in Iraq have denounced the latest election law passed by the Iraqi Council of Representatives. The law divides Iraq into several constituencies and also divides Christian quota seats in district and municipal elections.

The statement was signed by the Assyrian Patriotic Party, the Bethnahrain Patriotic Union (Huyodo d-Bethnahrin Athroyo), Abnaa al-Nahrain, and the Assyrian Democratic Movement (Zowaa). These parties consider the law to be another instance of marginalization and prejudice towards the right of Christians to have legitimate representation through the quota seat system.

The statement urges Iraqi political, parliamentary, and legislative bodies to assume responsibility in correcting this decision so that the indigenous Chaldean–Syriac–Assyrian people, and other peoples of Iraq, can freely express their opinions and have their will respected. The statement adds that enacting laws through an Iraqi legislative institution in which quota seats are shared is a violation of the Iraqi constitution.

Voting for minority quota seats should be restricted to the representative minority population, in accordance with international standards, and in respect for their free will, read the statement. This will eliminate the permanent theft and dominance of other parties who assign specified personalities that do not pay attention to the interests of this oppressed people in the land of Beth Nahrin (Mesopotamia), it continued.

Neglecting to limit voting to the represented minority reflects an undemocratic and exclusionary mentality that does not believe in justice or national partnership, the Chaldean–Syriac–Assyrian parties argued.

The statement commends the stances of the civil and religious institutions and leaders of the Christian communities in Iraq, who have made similar demands.