The Iraqi Parliament has finally passed a crucial election law, once they decided not to decide on the Kurdish question just yet. The new law is said to be "crucial for the nation to heal its deep-running political and religious fissures and also to shore up the fragile security gains that have been achieved in recent months."
But, there are a few troubling details:
The question of how to settle a fierce dispute over control of the ethnically mixed and oil-rich northern city of Kirkuk, however, was given to a committee for further study.
And an article in an earlier version of the law that provided a limited number of provincial council seats for Iraq’s Christians and other minorities was eliminated from the new bill, stirring outrage among the groups.
The new law eliminates an article that, in an earlier version, had provided 13 seats in six provinces for Iraqi Christians, Yazidis and other minorities — a move that Younadim Kanna, head of the Assyrian Democratic Movement and the only Christian member of Parliament said was “a very, very bad sign.
“We really were disappointed,” Mr. Kanna said, adding that he could “sense disaster” in the Parliament’s action.
“It seems they are confiscating the free will of the minorities and trying to impose their own puppets to represent” them, he said.
In a news conference held on Wednesday, Staffan de Mistura, the United Nations’ special representative to Iraq, called the passage of the election law “a good day for Iraq, a day for democracy,” but he added that the minority issue was a “dark cloud.”
Full article, here.
Who knows what Iraq will become once our troops leave (though one can safely bet that it will not be the western-oriented liberal democracy fantasized by the American right). What is clear is that Iraq will be less safe and less secure for the Christian remnant holding out there.